2023 NRL Preview Round 12: Dragons vs Roosters

Dylan Jhugroo previews the Round 12 match between the St George Illawarra Dragons and the Sydney Roosters.



St George Illawarra Dragons v Sydney Roosters
Venue: Netstrata Jubilee Stadium, Kogarah
Date: Friday May 19, 6:00pm


Dragons: 1. Tyrell Sloan 2. Mathew Feagai 3. Moses Suli 4. Zac Lomax 5. Mikaele Ravalawa 6. Talatau Amone 7. Ben Hunt 8. Jack de Belin 9. Jacob Liddle 10. Blake Lawrie 11. Jack Bird 12. Jaydn Su’A 13. Michael Molo 14. Jayden Sullivan 15. Toby Couchman 16. Ben Murdoch-Masila 17. Josh Kerr 18. Francis Molo 19. Moses Mbye 20. Jaiyden Hunt 21. Zane Musgrove 22. Max Feagai

Roosters: 1. James Tedesco 2. Corey Allan 3. Joseph Suaalii 4. Billy Smith 5. Jaxson Paulo 6. Luke Keary 7. Drew Hutchison 8. Jared Waerea-Hargreaves 9. Brandon Smith 10. Lindsay Collins 11. Egan Butcher 12. Sitili Tupouniua 13. Victor Radley 14. Jake Turpin 15. Nat Butcher 16. Angus Crichton 17. Matthew Lodge 18. Sandon Smith 19. Fletcher Baker 20. Nathan Brown 21. Junior Pauga 22. Terrell May

Referee: Peter Gough

Embed from Getty Images


The two clubs who have dominated the headlines this week come together this Friday night, as the much-changed Dragons host the much-maligned Roosters at Kogarah for the first time since 2019.

There are times in Rugby League when the solution to a club’s woes is common sense. Where everyone seems to know that ‘x player’ should start at hooker, and that ‘y player’ needs some time in reserve grade. But you accept the reality that the coaches have a wider plan, and that it’ll all make sense eventually.

This week the Dragons have confirmed that in fact, sometimes the fans’ common sense was right all along. The sacking of Anthony Griffin has seen Zac Lomax and Jacob Liddle finally recalled into the starting side, making way for Max Feagai and utility Moses Mbye. With the side coming off a six-game losing streak (including a loss to the Roosters), the players will be keen to prove that Griffin was indeed the issue, rather than the playing staff.

On the other side of the park is a club whose issues defy common sense, and whose problems run substantially deeper than shifting individual players around. The Roosters are regarded by many to have the best roster in the competition, but you would’ve been forgiven for thinking they’d run their NSW cup side out to take on the Panthers last week. The 2018-19 premiers completed 17 fewer sets than Penrith and made nearly 1,000 fewer meters. They were outclassed, outenthused, and embarrassed.

With Kiwi international Joseph Manu out with an ankle injury, Trent Robinson has turned to the steady hand of Illawarra junior and former Dragon Drew Hutchison in the halfback jersey, with Luke Keary reverting to his preferred five-eighth position. If the Roosters’ premiership credentials aren’t already gone – they’re slipping away fast, and the club needs a massive response this week.

KEY STAT: The two sides will play this week having conceded a combined 90 points last round. That is the highest total of two opposing teams this year by a significant margin.


Dragons 1, Roosters 9.


Roosters by 6 points

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Comments (2)

  1. Avatar
    Joash Muntem

    Please can anyone help me how to join in this group.

  2. Avatar
    Joash Muntem

    I am new so please and help me

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