The better quality halves pairing you have, the more likely you are to be rewarded with Premiership success. We look at the five most influential five-eighths who could steer their side to glory this October.
5. Anthony Milford, Brisbane Broncos
Brisbane’s much publicised signing from Canberra, Anthony Milford will partner Ben Hunt in the halves as the Broncos look to move up the ladder and become a serious threat in the competition. There’s no doubt a switched on Milford can set the rugby league world alight with skills that are heading towards super seeding those of recently departed Bronco Ben Barba. The twenty year old has forty-two matches under his belt so there’s still some rawness to his game but that could work in his favour.
4. Kieran Foran, Manly Sea Eagles
For twenty-four year old Kieran Foran, 2015 represents his biggest season to date. Does he sign on with Manly or move to another club for the right amount of cash? We already know that he and Daly Cherry-Evans are one of the most feared halves combination in the National Rugby League. Foran has a balanced game, one of quality in attack and steel-like in defense. His ability to inspire can’t be underestimated. With dark skies over Brookvale, Foran could be the silver lining and lift the Eagles within reach of their ninth title.
3. Jamie Soward, Penrith Panthers
Jamie Soward resurrected his career at the Panthers last year with great effect as they went within a whisker of making their first grand final since 2003. Panther fans didn’t get to see much of the Soward and Wallace combination last year because of injury to the latter. If it’s not Soward’s individual game determining the result, it’s the players who are influenced by his efforts that are reaping the rewards. One in particular Matt Moylan with his match winning efforts last year. You get the feeling that Penrith could go one step better with Soward’s experience and football smarts.
2. Josh Reynolds, Canterbury Bulldogs
Josh Reynolds is a man to be feared. Not only is he heavy in defense and good in attack, Reynolds likes to get under the skin of the opposition and put them off their game. This does get the twenty-five year old into a tiny bit of trouble as shown by his suspension after the Broncos game last season. Reynolds at his best will influence the result and in an uncanny way his partnership with Trent Hodkison works. The Bulldogs may have run in the bottom half of the eight but they came home with a wet sail. Reynolds will be a key to their end of season success.
1. Luke Keary, South Sydney Rabbitohs
Luke Keary might not have the defense of Josh Reynolds or Kieran Foran, but he’s one helluva player. After just twenty-two National Rugby League matches, Keary and Adam Renyolds steered the Rabbitohs to their first premiership in over forty years. There’s a lot to like about his game in attack and the way he can create opportunities for his outside backs and that’s a big thing when you have the likes of Inglis and Alex Johnson in your side. The Queensland-born Keary has been touted as a future New South Wales Blue and this is testament to how he’s held in high regard by those in the know. If Souths are to go back to back it will because of the growth of Keary as a player and how well he compliments the Bunnies side.