Inside the NRL: Jarryd Hayne proves his worth as Sharks suffer first loss in close to five months
By Jenna Brooks | Twitter: @JennaBrooks |
Last Updated: 08/08/16 3:45pm
Jenna Brooks wraps up all the big stories coming out of the NRL as Jarryd Hayne impresses on debut, Cronulla suffer a first loss in almost five months, plus some big news on Robbie Farah's future.
Accolades for Hayne
Jarryd Hayne has returned to rugby league with a bang. The former Dally M winner played 52 minutes, had eight runs for 76 metres and made nine tackles.
"I've still got it, I think," Hayne said. "It's obviously a lot faster and that's probably the biggest thing I've noticed."
Ryan Hoffman, a former New South Wales team-mate of Hayne said: "It was pretty amazing. He hasn't played a game in two years and some of the stuff he did today was unbelievable."
More than 25,000 turned up to the Gold Coast Titans home ground, making it the biggest crowd since the 2010 qualifying final, to welcome Hayne, who played at left centre, back to the game.
"It's pretty scary when you consider that's his first game," Warriors coach Andrew McFadden said. "We didn't know where he was going to play, but we prepared for the best of him."
Despite the former Australia international's impressive debut, the Titans didn't get the win, going down to the Warriors 24-14.
Cronulla suffered their first loss since round three, after losing 30-14 at home to Canberra.
The Sharks were unbeaten through 16 rounds heading into Saturday's match with the Raiders, who led 20-8 at half-time.
England's Josh Hodgson gave a man-of-the-match performance scoring two first-half tries, with as many try-assists to help Canberra to the 16-point win.
The hooker has been outstanding this season, and when voting went silent after round 16, Hodgson was a joint leader of the Dally M count.
The loss knocked Cronulla from the top of the ladder, after Melbourne beat South Sydney in golden point to take top spot.
The Rabbitohs led by two points heading into the final minute, but a Cameron Smith penalty levelled the score and sent the game into extra-time.
It was Smith who kicked the winning drop-goal to clinch the 15-14 win for the Storm and hand South Sydney a ninth loss in a row.
Reports in Australia suggest South Sydney are on the verge of offering Robbie Farah a two-year deal.
It's believed discussions have taken place between Farah's manager Sam Ayoub, the Rabbitohs General Manager Shane Richardson and the club's owner Russell Crowe.
The New South Wales hooker looks to have played his final game for the Wests Tigers, despite still having a year left on his contract.
The news that Farah could be on his way to South Sydney further ignite rumours that the club may be looking to offload some players, and one name that has been linked with a move away from the club is Tom Burgess.
George Burgess, Tom's twin brother has squashed the rumours, saying: "My brother isn't leaving. It isn't an issue. The club has already told us they're happy with Tom. That he's contracted to the club until 2018 and will be here into the future."
Last month, Brett Stewart was linked with a move to the Catalans Dragons. There are fresh reports that Manly are prepared to release the full-back from his contract, which has one year left worth over £400,000.
The former Australia international has plenty of reasons to make the move to the South of France. His brother Glenn is playing in Perpignan, as well as former Manly team-mate Willie Mason. The 31-year old has spent his entire career with Manly, helping them to two NRL Premierships.
Speculation continues to surround Blake Austin being called up to play for England. The Canberra five-eighth, who qualifies via his grandmother, said: "Nothing's happened. I was asked by someone if I qualify and by the rules I do qualify. That's all it is. It's someone writing a story."