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Martin: Don't fall afoul of humble hero Yeo

Isaah Yeo comes across as cool, calm and collected on the field but according to his Brydens Lawyers NSW Blues teammate Liam Martin there is a side of him you don’t want to see if things don’t go according to plan.

“If you don’t do the right thing on the field, you’ll see him come storming over to you, pointing the finger at you, and telling you how it is,” Martin said.

“I can’t repeat what he’s said to me – let’s just say it was strong words of encouragement!”

Despite being on the end of a few verbal thrashings, Yeo remains one of Martin’s favourite players.

The Penrith Panthers co-captain makes an average 11 hit-ups and 144 metres per game in the NRL, with a tackle efficiency rate of 97%.

Yeo has also won three of the five Origins he’s played for the Brydens Lawyers NSW Blues, and in the three games of 2021 he made 114 tackles in total missing only four.

“He won’t tell you how good he is because he’s too humble, but I reckon he’s the best in the comp with what he does for Penrith each week,” Martin said.

“I think he goes unnoticed and doesn’t get the raps he deserves.

“I find what he does on a football field massive – he’s incredible.”

Yeo is amongst six players from the Penrith Panthers, which is the largest by any club since St George Illawarra Dragons had seven Origin players in the NSW team in 2011.

Still, Martin has an insight into what True Blues Brett Morris, Mark Gasnier, Jamie Soward, Dean Young, Beau Scott, Ben Creagh and Trent Merrin experienced in the Blues camp that year.

“It’s so nice having all us Panthers together,” Martin said of his teammates Nathan Cleary, Stephen Crichton, Jarome Luai, Brian To’o and Isaah Yeo.

“We’re all great mates and we respect each other so much.”

Martin, who made his NSW debut last season, is also looking forward to playing his first game in front of home fans after all three games were played in Queensland last year due to COVID-19.

“I didn’t get to run out in front of all the Sydney fans – I will this time though,” Martin said.

“The atmosphere of an Origin is next-level. You just get tingles running out.

“If you’re in Queensland you get an absolute spray, but you still run out thinking ‘How good is this?’”


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.