It was a dominant team performance from Wests Tigers on Saturday evening as they roared back from a half-time deficit to down the Cronulla Sharks in their Round 3 clash at Bankwest Stadium.
Having watched his side keep the hosts scoreless for the entire second half, Coach Michael Maguire would have certainly been impressed with the resilience and commitment shown by Wests Tigers throughout the second half and the positive signs that exude for the immediate future of his side.
For NRL Fantasy Coaches, it was also another big night with the likes of Luke Brooks, David Nofoaluma and several others all posting big scores — leaving us with some big decisions to make about our Wests Tigers players moving forward.
Harry Grant: A Fantasy must-have?
He was the talking point all week and Harry Grant certainly didn't disappoint in his debut for Wests Tigers — scoring the opening try and making a bunch of tackles to finish with a very strong 63 Fantasy points. The young gun hooker has already risen by $52K in price, and with plenty more price rises likely to come, is looming as a near must-have — at least for the next little while as he increases in price.
The bigger question comes down to his minutes and what rotation Maguire looks to utilise between Grant and Billy Walters, who came off the bench with immediate effect on Saturday night. In his 20-minute spell, Walters had a try assist and contributed to another linebreak and will most likely retain some sort of role in the squad moving forward as a result. What that means for the minutes of he, and Grant, in the near future is unclear, but Grant should still see the lions share of the hooking duties and rise enough in price for now to make him a sharp buy.
Alex Twal's big minutes is a big win
It's no secret in the Fantasy community that once Alex Twal got big minutes, he would be a bonafide gun... if he wasn't one already. Well, we all got our wish on Saturday night when the Lebanese international chalked out his first 80-minute performance of the season at lock — equating to 62 points in pure base stats.
His $761K price tag isn't for the faint of heart — particularly after rising $78K already on the season — but Twal is a genuine set-and-forget type of player that every team needs moving forward. With no byes or Origin during the season to affect rotation, Twal is one of the easiest players to lock in to your side and leave for the duration of the year — especially if he's locked in for big minutes each week.
Who do we target on the right edge?
While the return of Luke Brooks and Moses Mbye certainly added some potency to Wests Tigers left edge attack in Round 3 — scoring the first two tries — it's been pretty much all the right flank doing the damage in the opening three rounds. David Nofoaluma has started the year on fire with four tries to lead all players in the league while Benji Marshall is turning back the clock with his playmaking skills.
But the question is: who do we target for Fantasy on the right edge?
Nofoaluma just makes it look easy
Nofoaluma is the easy target for his metres and tackle busts, and if he can keep scoring tries at the rate he has been then he's well worth the $734K price tag, but it's a fair price to pay for an outside back this early on in the season. If he keeps the goal-kicking duties then Benji Marshall ($646K) is definitely an option, but you have to wonder if the creative duties will level out a bit more now with Brooks back.
That leaves Luke Garner as another option, following his shift from the left to the right last week. Garner scored a try and earned himself 48 Fantasy points as a result, with his usual metres tally not quite what it normally is. Having already fallen by over $100K already this season, Garner is quite appealing at the $575K price if the attacking stats can continue, while Joey Leilua ($444K) is also due for a breakout game sometime soon as well. Both players are owned by less than six percent of players, so they could well be worth a look in Round 4.
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