True Blue Jamie Soward believes Western Suburbs Magpies might have to start planning for life without hooker Jake Simpkin after his successful NRL debut for Wests Tigers last round.
In his Knock-On Effect NSW Cup Round Seven preview for the Short Side on nswrl.com.au, Soward said the Magpies rake made everyone sit up and take notice during the 18-14 loss to South Sydney Rabbitohs.
“Jake Simpkin made his NRL debut on the weekend – 58 tackles in his first game – that would have taken me about three years to make that many I reckon,” Soward said.
“But I liked the way he got out of dummy half, and I liked the way he was able to roll the ruck for the Wests Tigers – it was an important addition after they have struggled a little since the retirement of Robbie Farah.
“However, Jacob Liddle was fantastic in the Knock-On Effect NSW Cup as well.”
Liddle was also impressive during the Magpies 42-18 win over the Rabbitohs in the Knock-On Effect NSW Cup with two try assists, 2 line-break assists, a line break himself and 36 tackles.
Simpkin has retained his spot for Saturday’s NRL Round Seven match against Manly, while Liddle has been named as Magpies No.9 for their match against Blacktown Workers Sea Eagles.
It has created a good selection headache for Wests Tigers coach Michael Maguire.
“I think that competition is healthy within a squad and Michel Maguire would be happy about how his No.9 played on the weekend,” Soward said.