FORMER NSW coach Phil Gould is worried the Blues will peak too early for their Origin clash with Queensland on Wednesday night.
NSW centre Mark Gasnier is quietly confident he will be right for Wednesday's State of Origin clash against Queensland despite a groin injury.
THE St George Illawarra Jersey Flegg side has made history and in the process sent an ominous warning to the rest of the competition with a resounding 102 - 8 win over the Central Coast Rip at Oki Jubilee Stadium today.
WYNNUM SEAGULLS 52 defeat SOUTHS LOGAN MAGPIES 22
NORTH QLD YOUNG GUNS 22 defeat EASTS TIGERS 16
WALES successfully opened their defence of the Parkhouse Recruitment Conference Home Nations Championship at the Brewery Field on Sunday after beating Scotland 70-8 in front of a crowd of over 700.
NORTHS DEVILS 40 defeat IPSWICH JETS 14
BURLEIGH BEARS 56 defeat REDCLIFFE DOLPHINS
THE Sydney Airport Jets staged another last-minute escape act in Saturday?s thrilling VB Premier League match against St.George-Illawarra at Henson Park. Two weeks ago the Jets beat Parramatta 22-16 with a converted try in the last minute of play and in an amazing coincidence, Newtown repeated that same 22-16 winning margin and the late converted try against the Dragons.
LONDON Broncos 24 - Widnes Vikings 10
THE London Broncos made it four victories on the trot in the Engage Super League with a 24 - 10 win at the Halton Stadium over League strugglers Widnes Vikings.
LEAGUE Wrap: Round 14, 10-12 June 2005
St George Illawarra utility back Ben Hornby looks to be charging home in this year?s Leagueunlimited.com Player Awards after scoring maximum points for consecutive weeks. He moves up to 16 points overall, just three points behind Cowboys full back Matt Bowen.
THE Mitsubishi Electric Bulldogs team to take on the Raiders at the Sydney Showground in Round 15 of the Telstra NRL Premiership is:
BARNSTORMING Vodafone Warriors prop Iafeta Paleaaesina has regained a starting spot for Saturday night?s NRL clash against Parramatta at Hamilton?s Waikato Stadium.
It means the 23-year-old has pushed former Kangaroo Richard Villasanti onto the interchange bench for his 100th milestone appearance.
That positional swap is the only change head coach Tony Kemp and his staff have made in retaining the 17 players used in Sunday night?s 24-16 victory over Melbourne.
Paleaaesina, who hasn?t started a match since the fifth-round encounter with Wests Tigers in Christchurch in early April, excelled against the Storm. As well as scoring the eighth try of his 72-match career, he topped the team?s hit-up count with 20 and made the most metres (167).
?It?s a selection based totally on merit,? said Kemp.
?Villa hasn?t done anything wrong for us but Feka has come up to another level again in the last two weeks. He demanded selection and on his form he deserves the chance against Parramatta.?
While Kemp was delighted with Paleaaesina?s display, he also reserved special mention for halfback Stacey Jones.
?He was back as captain and we were delighted with the way he took on all the extra responsibilities,? said Kemp.
?It was his best performance in the last two seasons. Now it?s up to Stacey to maintain it week in, week out. It?s what we need from him if we are to continue our bid for the top eight.?
Kemp had no hesitation in rating the Vodafone Warriors? victory as their best display of the year, even ahead of the round two win over the Broncos in Brisbane.
?It was outstanding all-round. The players showed great resolve, great character and great attitude,? he said.
Loose forward Sione Faumuina returns from a one-match suspension as the side?s 18th man while winger Manu Vatuvei was unable to make the squad.
?Manu?s still in contention and pushing for a spot but we just can?t find room for him this week,? said Kemp.
Villasanti?s introduction from the bench on Saturday night will make him the fifth player in the squad so far this season to bring up 100 first-grade appearances (after Clinton Toopi, Wairangi Koopu, Francis Meli and Nathan Fien). His first 13 games were for Balmain and then the merger club Wests Tigers in 1999-2000 but since then he has put together 86 appearances for the Vodafone Warriors.
The match is a scheduled ?home? game for Parramatta after agreeing to bring the match to Hamilton, giving the Waikato city its first official NRL competition match.
?But rather than an away game I look at this as a home one for us,? said Kemp.
Parramatta is second on the NRL ladder after five successive wins while Vodafone Warriors are 10th just on the edge of the top eight. They have now improved to be the 10th best side on attack while they rank fourth-best on defence.
WE seem to hear it every year. Clubs complaining about losing their star players come rep season.