James Tedesco v Josh Dugan
James Tedesco will line-up tomorrow for his 24th match of the season – a remarkable achievement after the terrible run of injuries the Camden Rams junior experienced to start his career. It has been some year for Tedesco – scoring more tries (16) and making more metres (3548) than any of his teammates.
Josh Dugan has won just one of eight clashes with Wests Tigers – with his first victory over the joint venture coming in Round 20 last year. The NSW Blues custodian is another player in great form in 2015, having made close to 1000 more metres than any of his teammates this season (3640m – next best is Trent Merrin with 2816m).
It’s hard to believe that two of the game’s best fullbacks in Tedesco and Dugan are yet to play one another, with Dugan missing the earlier clash between the two sides in Round 2. This is set to be an exciting encounter between two livewires and highly valuable attacking weapons within their respective sides.
Career Head-to-Head clashes: Yet to play at an NRL level.
NRL Fantasy Prices: Tedesco $448,000 (Season: +$106,000; Average: 54.4), Dugan $385,000 (Season: -$10,000; Average: 47.4)
Aaron Woods v Leeson Ah Mau
It has been a relatively quiet few weeks from the renowned metre-man Aaron Woods, with 108 metres against the Warriors and 76 against the Sharks. In saying that, Woods’ average metres per game this year is a very healthy 161. Look out for a big game to finish the year from the Leichhardt junior, who is one of the favourites to take out the Dally M prop of the year award.
Leeson Ah Mau has been one of the big improvers his season, playing every match for the Dragons in 2015. Along with Trent Merrin and Jack De Belin, Ah Mau has been one of the best forwards for the Red V – however he is among one of three players in the Dragons’ 17 yet to score a try this year.
Woods and Ah Mau will clash for the fourth time in their careers tomorrow night in a final round match that is still important for both Clubs. Both fairly unlikely scenarios, however Woods needs to ensure his side avoids last place, while Ah Mau needs to secure a top-eight birth for St George Illawarra with Manly-Warringah a chance of sneaking in.
Career Head-to-Head clashes: Played 4 – Woods 2, Ah Mau 2
NRL Fantasy Prices: Woods $308,000 (Season: -$118,000; Average: 48.2), Ah Mau $369,000 (Season: +$18,000; Average: 39.9)
Luke Brooks v Benji Marshall
Luke Brooks has missed just the one game this season and his combination with Mitchell Moses and James Tedesco is continuing to improve with each match. The crafty playmaker scored his ninth try of the season last week against the Warriors, taking his career tally to 16 in 44 matches.
Tomorrow night will be Benji Marshall’s third game against the Wests Tigers since his departure from the Club at the end of 2013. Marshall has led the Dragons side around well in 2016 and his partnership with Gareth Widdop has been one of their best assets. However, with Widdop ruled out of the match with injury, expect a lot more involvement from Marshall as he partners rookie Drew Hutchinson.
As most Wests Tigers fans would remember, Marshall played alongside Brooks in his very first game back in 2013 – funnily enough against St George Illawarra. Two years down the track, the pair will go head-to-head once again in a match-up that always excites. Look out for both players to make an impact in this game at ANZ Stadium.
Career Head-to-Head clashes: Played 2 – Brooks 1, Marshall 1
NRL Fantasy Prices: Brooks $201,000 (Season: -$20,000; Average: 31.4), Marshall $261,000 (Season: -$52,000; Average: 33.2)