Younger weapons make their mark whereas an previous professional reveals he is nonetheless received it

It’s that point once more. With the 2023 NRL season simply across the nook, it means The Roar’s annual countdown of the Prime 50 gamers within the NRL is again underway.

A fast recap on the way it works: 4 of our NRL specialists right here at The Roar have put our heads collectively and listed our high 50 gamers every. Then, factors had been awarded based mostly on how excessive they ranked on every knowledgeable’s checklist.

Stated factors had been then tallied to present you our definitive high 50 for season 2023.

We have now already listed players 50-41 together with players 40-31. Listed below are the subsequent 10 as we start the countdown to the highest 10.

Who makes the reduce… and who misses the checklist? Let’s discover out.  Who’s excessive, and who’s too low? Tell us within the feedback under.

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30. Kalyn Ponga (Knights)

Tremendous robust, and doesn’t get sufficient credit score for it.

The instances Ponga was not at his finest in 2022 don’t even come near cancelling out all of the instances he was unstoppable over his profession. The 2-time Danny Buderus Medal winner remains to be one of the vital thrilling fullbacks within the competitors and was completely sensational throughout the Maroons Recreation 3 win final yr.

When he’s not hanging out in rest room cubicles, the 24-year-old has a number of the finest footwork within the sport and continuously places his physique on the road. Sadly, he’s additionally somebody who continues to battle with accidents and concussions. Will probably be attention-grabbing to see how his swap from fullback to five-eighth goes this season.

29. Api Koroisau (Tigers)

Stamping his title on the quantity 9 jersey, Koroisau pushed his manner into the beginning function for NSW forward of Damien Prepare dinner.

The 30-year-old continues to rise the ranks as one of many sport’s finest hookers over his 9 years within the NRL, and has been an integral a part of the Panthers’ success over the previous two years.

Koroisau will likely be searching for continued success at his new membership the Wests Tigers, the place he has additionally been given the honour of captain for 2023. Hopefully he doesn’t have anymore public talking mishaps throughout any of his upcoming post-match press conferences.

Api Koroisau passes the ball

(Picture by Jason McCawley/Getty Photos)

28. Jake Trbojevic (Sea Eagles)

Everybody loves Jake.

Whereas his lightning quick brother Turbo is normally the one making the headlines, the older sibling Jurbo continues to do all of the onerous yards.

Identified for carrying his coronary heart on his sleeve, refusing to surrender and at all times being there within the deal with, the 28-year-old has proved what an asset he’s to the sport throughout his eight seasons at Brookvale. In addition to being one of many nicest guys on the planet, he’s one hell of a participant.

At all times reliable for his membership, state and nation, anybody could be comfortable to have this workhorse on their group.

27. Joseph Suaali’i (Roosters)

There was plenty of hype surrounding this child – and he has lived as much as all of it.

2022 was an enormous yr for Suaali’i, and his efforts noticed him named one of many Dally M Wingers of the Yr. The gifted 19-year-old not solely secured a beginning spot for the Tricolours however earned a spot within the NSW Origin prolonged squad earlier than representing Samoa on the World Cup.

He’s one thing particular, and he’s solely going to get higher. No surprise rugby union need him again so badly.

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 29: Joseph Suaalii smiles during a Sydney Roosters NRL training session at Kippax Lake on March 29, 2022 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images)

(Picture by Mark Metcalfe/Getty Photos)

26. Dylan Edwards (Panthers)

Mr Dependable!

After six years within the high grade, the 26-year-old has turn out to be one of many most secure and hardest working and fullbacks within the sport.

Throughout his 25 appearances in 2022, the Clive Churchill Medal winner Edwards was good and intensely entertaining to look at. He averaged 192 operating metres and 19 runs per sport and was protected as homes beneath the excessive ball.

He’s locked in with the Panthers till the tip of 2024, and little question the membership will likely be hoping to maintain him for for much longer than that.

25. Damien Prepare dinner (Rabbitohs)

Heading into his eleventh season within the NRL, Prepare dinner is without doubt one of the finest readers out of dummy half, and is nice at getting his opposition offside and on the again foot.

At all times onerous to cease, 2022 was no completely different. Exhibiting he can combine it with the younger guys, the 31-year-old led the way in which for dummy halves with probably the most deal with busts with 70, together with ten offloads and eight line breaks.

The 2018 Dally M Hooker of the Yr signed a two-year extension that may see him stay at Redfern till the tip of the 2025 season when he’ll most definitely cling up the boots. Dropping his spot as hooker for NSW, Prepare dinner is not going to solely be taking a look at guiding the Bunnies to premiership glory in that point, but in addition getting his quantity 9 jersey for the Blues again.

Damien Cook takes a run in the NRL grand final

(Picture by Chris Hyde/Getty Photos)

24. Payne Haas (Broncos)

Simply one hardest males within the sport.

Accidents and drama appear to observe him, however the 23-year-old stays an absolute machine, taking residence the Dally M Prop of the Yr award in 2021 and 2022.

Making 524 tackles together with 47 deal with busts and 21 offloads, in addition to operating 3020 meters with 1542 post-contact metres, Haas as soon as once more confirmed simply how good he’s.

23. Jahrome Hughes (Storm)

A little bit of an underrated famous person alongside teammates akin to Cam Munster, Ryan Papenyuyzen and Harry Grant.

However the 2021 Storm Participant of the Yr stood up when everybody round him was injured, suspended or away for Origin.

Hughes scored 12 tries – probably the most from any halfback – together with 15 assists throughout his 21 video games. He completed the yr with 79 deal with busts, 15 line breaks and 12 offloads.

He was additionally probably the most disciplined halfback throughout the NRL season, making a gift of only one penalty in 2022, and went on to signify New Zealand on the World Cup.

Jahrome Hughes of the Storm

Jahrome Hughes (Picture by Matt King/Getty Photos)

22. Jeremiah Nanai (Cowboys)

Signed to the Cowboys Cairns Academy at simply 15 years previous, Nanai’s abilities had been there for all to see very early on. After two seasons within the high grade, the now 19-year-old exploded onto the NRL scene and by no means seemed again.

With the flexibility to attain tries at will, the excessive flying ahead grabbed 17 four-pointers for the season and was the one participant within the high ten strive scores who wasn’t a winger. He additionally managed 43 deal with busts, 17 offloads and 10 line breaks and was deservedly awarded each the 2022 Dally M Rookie and Second-Rower of the Yr.

Nanai additionally scored his first Maroons and Kangaroos jerseys, with little question loads extra of every nonetheless to return.

21. Valentine Holmes (Cowboys)

One other Cowboy who took residence some silverware from 2022 Dally M awards.

2 years previous in keeping with his start certificates, Holmes in some way appears to be going backwards in age. His shift from fullback to the centres was a masterstroke, the place he went on to win Dally M Centre of Yr. His 100 targets at 82 per cent precision additionally noticed him named 2022 NRL’s Prime Level Scorer.

A premiership winner with the Sharks in 2016, he got here near recreating that magic with the Cowboys. Averaging 146 operating metres and 14 runs per sport, he managed 80 deal with busts, 26 offloads, 14 line breaks in addition to 77.17 deal with accuracy throughout his 24 video games. He additionally scored ten tries and arrange one other six for the Cowboys.

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