Five Talking Points from Auckland Nines Day 1

One day. 17 Games. 306 minutes of rugby league.

1. Aaron Gray injured in Souths opening match

Aaron Gray was sustained a medial ligament injury in his side’s opening match which is not good news especially leading into the 2017 season. Shortly before the Auckland Nines competition started, Penrith CEO Brian Fletcher noted he wanted the pre-season tournament scrapped due to the unnecessary risk the first grade players have sustaining an injury. He questioned the competitions value and has a valid point due to South Sydney Rabbitoh’s favourite Aaron Gray sustaining injury on the first day which may lead to Gray missing the first half of the season.

2. Parramatta Eels impressive

The defending Auckland Nines champions*, the Parramatta Eels have impressed on the first day of the Auckland Nines competition. Corey Norman and Semi Radradra both made a huge impact throughout both games to lead their side to victory. Parramatta will be hoping to make the final tomorrow for a chance to take out the title for the second year in a row.

3. Jai Field has a need for speed

Jai Field was definitely a favourite in today’s tournament playing for St George Illawarra Dragons. He displayed a need for speed impressing for the Dragons in both of their games. They were unfortunate to come down short in both games but he played with determination maybe in hope to be given the opportunity for the number seven jersey throughout the 2017 season. He was a great talent to watch for the Dragons through the day.

4. What happened with the Warriors?

In one of the worse starts to the tournament Warriors lost Shaun Johnson for both games and were unable to hold on to a lead. They were left scoreless in their second game which left the home crowd unimpressed. Silence surrounded the stadium after Warriors lost their second game of the day against Manly Sea Eagles and have been knocked out of the competition.

What this will do for crowd interest on day two will be interesting to see.

5. Jillaroos electrifying in their first game of the tournament

Jillaroos defeated the Kiwi Ferns 20-4 in their first game of the tournament. Playing three games altogether within the competition the Jillaroos will be hopeful in continuing the terrific form to avoid the Ferns taking out their fourth consecutive series.

Chelsea Barker was impressive on the field displaying fancy footwork and scoring two tries for Australia. Kenzie Apps was also impressive after she illustrated her speed to score a try for her country on her birthday, what a great birthday present! Congratulations girls on a successful first game.

The action continues tomorrow at 10am AEST on Fox Footy Channel 502.

* Eels later were stripped of the title in 2016


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