Statistics tell a story and it's time to see how the game played out with By the Numbers.
We all know Adam Reynolds’ strength is his kicking and playmaking but what he rarely gets rapped for is his running. As the saying goes, ‘Styles make Fights’ with Luke Brooks’ strength being his running game.
Going into the game Brooks’ average with the ball was a tick under 100 metres with Reynolds averaging just 42 metres. Tonight Reynolds really tested the line particularly in the first half and got the better of his other half in this department. Reynolds sliced through the line and almost scored, beating Luke Brooks in the process midway through the first half.
The little general had four tackle breaks, one linebreak, two linebreak assists and two try assists. He essentially had a hand in everything!
While Reynolds’ running game dried up in the second half, it was the way he engaged the line in the first half that allowed South Sydney to play more expansive in the second. Engaging the line shifts around the defensive line, just like Chess.
Goal kicking did not cost Souths
Reynolds leads the competition in goal kick percentage but he only kicked one from five tonight. Two of them were from the sideline but luckily this did not cost the Rabbitohs (even with the Tigers breathing down their necks late). Reynolds kicked 7/7 against the Tigers in season 2019 so the off night with the boot was very un-Reynolds like.
Six Agains spark today’s Dummy Half
The Rabbitohs had five six-agains while the Tigers only registered one. Both of South Sydney’s tries in the first half came off the back of six-agains and we all know this allows today’s dummy-half to get out and attack with real gusto.
We also anticipated it would be the battle of the dummy halves tonight. Damien Cook managed to register a six-again for himself but where he really shone when comparing to Harry Grant were his scoots out of dummy-half.
Cookie ran for over 100 metres while Grant only had under 20 metres with the ball to his name. Interesting to note though, while the Rabbitohs generated the better ‘roll on’, their play-the-ball speed has half a second slower than the Tigers; which makes a big difference particularly in the middle-third of the field.
300 metres to 3 Tries
It was Dane Gagai’s first hat-trick at Club level tonight! Coming off a storming 300-metre performance last week, Gagai proved tonight if you keep your width sometimes you’ll just get those uncontested runs to the try line! He did everything a good winger is supposed to do; field the kicks, look for work and keep your width!
Mitchell draws in the defence for Gagai to get a double