Taking a break from yesterday’s word-fest, let’s say it mostly in pictures today.
Below you will find a series of charts that, like yesterday, seem to go on forever. But don’t be fooled – there is valuable information in them that the final eight combatants might like to take on board.
But look at the performance from Round 21 onwards. The Storm and Roosters (and the Cowboys and Bulldogs to a lesser extent) have been monumental laggards in the 1st half compared to what can only be described as rampaging 2nd halves.
The clear standout performer in 1st halves of late has been Manly. Watch out Roosters in your double/triple/quadruple-header on Saturday – you won’t catch them if they’re three tries up. Bad starts can’t be taken into the finals if you want to be taken seriously.
The clear anomaly is the Rabbitohs. Now, I’m more than aware they had a tough closing draw, but so did the entire Top 4. It’s not the distribution of points that is the concern, it’s the amount. Of all Top 4 points from Round 21, the Bunnies have contributed just 16% of them (the others 25-30%). Finals aren’t expected to be high-scoring affairs, but this brings into some doubt their ability to score enough points to win.
Yes, I refuse to call it ‘offence’.
Look at the Rabbitohs losing control of the metres game over the back half of the season … and tell me the Cows haven’t had it on a string coming into the finals.