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NSW Team of the Week | Rd 9

Each week of the NRL season, the staff writers will have their say on the round's best performing New South Welshmen. These are based entirely on the opinions of the writers and do not necessarily reflect the views of the NSWRL or the selection process for the Brydens Lawyers NSW Blues. Captaincy is awarded based on that week’s on-field performance and is not based on club captaincy or leadership qualities. 

1. James Tedesco
Club: Sydney Roosters; NSW Origin appearances: 7; 2019 TOTW selections: 5

The Roosters blew the Raiders off the park in the first-half and it was largely thanks to the blistering efforts of Tedesco. He started with a bullet pass to Matt Ikuvalu for the first try before breaking the line to set up Cronk on the ensuing set. Finished with 199m, one try, three try-assists, and eight tackle-breaks in another stellar display. 

2. Josh Addo-Carr
Club: Melbourne Storm; NSW Origin appearances: 3; 2019 TOTW selections: 3

What a performance it was from the Melbourne Storm and Addo-Carr. He produced another customary dazzling display in their 62-10 domination of the Eels with 180m and two tries – the second of which being a scintillating 80m dash that saw him turn Mitchell Moses inside out with sheer speed en route to the try-line.  

3. Josh Morris
Club: Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks; NSW Origin appearances: 14; 2019 TOTW selections: 1

Wound back the clock with arguably his best performance in years as he inspired the Sharks to a hard-fought win over the Broncos. Recorded two tries, 104m and seven tackle-breaks in an effort that is bound to give him a wealth of confidence as the Sharks battle with an injury-riddled roster. 

4. Curtis Scott
Club: Melbourne Storm; NSW Origin appearances: 0; 2019 TOTW selections: 1 

He made a welcome return after a short absence in recent weeks and looked to have made an ominous case for a NSW jumper only to be hampered with a potential broken foot in the second-half. The highlight of his strong display was his powerful 100m try which saw him bustle through a host of would-be tacklers before finishing with 262m. 

5. Aaron Gray
Club: Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks; NSW Origin appearances: 0; NSW TOTW selections: 1

He hasn't been sighted in first-grade for a while but he well and truly made the most of his return to the NRL with two tries, two line-breaks and 120m. Few may be in front for a spot on the wing but provides valuable depth for a side struggling with injury. 

6. Cody Walker
Club: South Sydney Rabbitohs: NSW Origin appearances: 0; NSW TOTW selections: 5

He didn't set the world on fire like he has in recent weeks but it was still another impressive performance from the elusive no.6. Caused plenty of havoc with six tackle-breaks but his incredible catch and swirling run for his second-half try shone above the rest. 

7. Luke Brooks
Club: Wests Tigers; NSW Origin appearances: 0; NSW TOTW selections: 2

Was a key figure in the Tigers thumping victory over the Panthers on Friday night and helped engineer a relentless first-half performance. Scored his sides second try with a 40m dash off a Robbie Farah break before setting up two more and running for 136m. 

8. Payne Haas
Club: Brisbane Broncos; NSW Origin appearances: 0; NSW TOTW selections: 3

Playing well beyond his years in 2019 and has fast become the inspirational leader of the Broncos forward pack. Ran for an ominous 202m on Friday night while recording 9 tackle-breaks and 32 tackles. A tireless effort on either side of the ball and will be crucial if the Broncos are to make a surge into the top 8. 

9. Damien Cook (C)
Club: South Sydney Rabbitohs; NSW Origin appearances: 3; NSW TOTW selections: 5

There's not enough words to describe Damien Cook's performance on Sunday and it's fair to say it was a near-perfect display. Set up three tries on the back of his dynamic runnning out of dummy-half before scoring a well-deserved try in the second-half. Matched the stature of his stunning masterclass with 51 tackles. An incredible game. 

10. David Klemmer
Club: Newcastle Knights; NSW Origin appearances: 12; NSW TOTW selections: 6

It's no coincidence the Knights have found some red-hot form with three consecutive wins and it coincides with some powerful efforts from Klemmer as-well. Bolstered their momentum with 162m, including 61 post-contact metres, and 48 tackles. 

11. Ryan Matterson
Club: Wests Tigers; NSW Origin appearances: 0; NSW TOTW selections: 2

Has hit career-best form in 2019 and his 80-minute performance on Friday night was easily his greatest. Ran for 155m and caused plenty of problems for the Panthers defence with two try-assists and three tackle-breaks. Topped the tackle count with 38 and had well and truly made the Tigers right-edge his own. 

12. Tyson Frizell
Club: St George Illawarra Dragons; NSW Origin appearances: 0; NSW TOTW selections: 3

It wasn't the performance the Dragons were looking for but Frizell lead from the front in fine style. Ran for over 100m and recorded 30 tackles and produced a late offload for Zac Lomax for the first try of the afternoon. Inspired his side as best he could with the 'C' next to his name. 

13. Paul Gallen
Club: Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks; NSW Origin appearances: 24; NSW TOTW selections: 1

It was his final game at Suncorp Stadium and Gallen ensured it was a fitting send-off with one of his most dominant performances in recent memory. Ran for 200m and recorded 27 tackles before icing the victory with a try and ensuing conversion in the dying stages. 

14. Ryan Papenhuyzen
Club: Melbourne Storm; NSW Origin appearances: 0; NSW TOTW selections: 1

Few have had an impact like Papenhuyzen did after just a handful of first-grade games and his scintillating performance in just 32 minutes suggests why he is rated so highly. Came on for an injured Jarome Hughes and starred with a try, two try-assists, three line-breaks, two line-break assists, six tackle-breaks and 137m. 

15. Cameron Murray
Club: South Sydney Rabbitohs; NSW Origin appearances: 0; NSW TOTW selections: 7

There's little surprise that Murray has found himself in the TOTW once again with another barnstorming performance on Sunday. He ran a perfect line and showed great foorwork for his first-half try and finished with 113m and  31 tackles.

16. Jake Trbojevic
Club: Manly Warringah Sea Eagles; NSW Origin appearances: 0; NSW TOTW selections: 7

The ever-reliable forward put in another dazzling display in a losing Manly outfit with 152m and 50 tackles. Worked hard on either side of the ball in an 80-minute performance that is sure to inspire his team-mates in the coming weeks. 

17. Dale Finucane
Club: Melbourne Storm; NSW Origin appearances: 0; NSW TOTW selections: 3 

The Storm bounced back in emphatic style and it was Finucane who helped achieve that with a hard-working display on Saturday night. Recorded 117 metres and 30 tackles and also crossed for a try in the first-half to give his side the perfect start. Been one of their most consistent performers in 2019. 

Acknowledgement of Country

New South Wales Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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