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The 2018 Super League Dream Team…. Using Stats

With the official Betfred Super League Dream Team announced just the other day. We here at Golden Point RL have looked into who, statistically, should be in the team. The team consists of the 13 best players in Super League based on the stats available to use. 

There are seven St Helens players in the squad as they showed dominance in the league this season and are most likely the favourites to win at Old Trafford out of the four sides in the semi-finals. In total 9 of this years Dream Team have made the cut, however, you may be surprised by some of the entrants.

To be included in the team, the player had to have played atleast 14 games of the 28 possible.

1- Ben Barba

The top try-scorer and the player with the most assists. Ben Barba has shown us exactly how a modern day full back should play. Saints fans will miss the free-flowing style that Barba has brought to the side. The full-back has scored 28 tries in 25 games and has also racked up 24 assists. The speed that Barba possesses has allowed him to also make 141 tackle busts this season and 30 clean breaks. These are among the highest attacking stats this season.

2. Tom Johnstone

A new addition to the England Squad, Johnstone is the second highest scorer on Super League this season with 24 tries. The winger tacked up 2925 metres over the season with an average again of 9.41 metres with every carry, one of the highest in the league. The Wakefield player is an out and out finisher as he has only racked up one assist all season but his pace and cutting edge have ensured his place in this team.

3. Mark Percival

Mark Percival was often on the end of passes from full-back Ben Barba and was another one of St Helens star performers as he racked up a total of 20 tries and 17 assists. Percival, who can also fill in as a winger has made 2811 metres this season. His 29 offloads have also created a good attacking platform for his side.

4. Bill Tupou

The second Wakefield player in the team. Bill Tupou is the highest metre maker in the competition this season, over 200 metres further than his nearest peer. His total metres made were 4114 with an average of 8.66 metres with every carry. One of the most reliable players for Chris Chester’s side, the centre has also racked up a total of 14 tries. He also has the highest number of carries with 475.

5. Greg Eden

Despite missing half of the season through injury, the Castleford winger has still managed to score 18 tries in just 14 games. The reason that Eden makes the cut is because of his superior strike rate compared to any other winger in Super League. He also has an average gain of 10.59 metres, which, for any player who is eliegible, is the largest by half a metre.

6. Jonny Lomax

With your half-backs being the linchpins of the side, they need to have good kicking, passing and scoring stats. Lomax has scored a total of 17 tries and 16 assists from the stand-off position this season. His 158 attacking kicks also set a solid bass for Saints as they were very good at winning the territory battle in most games.

7. Danny Richardson

Lomax’s half-back partner for the Saints was Richardson who has fully deserved his spot in this dream team. He has kicked 132 successful goals this season, 38 more than anybody else. He may have only scored five tries this season but his total points scored are 294 in his first full season as a starting half-back. As well as a decent kicking game, Richardson has provided 17 assists.

8. Luke Thompson

Yet another Saints player making our Dream Team. Luke Thompson has made 440 carries for the League Leaders making 3633 metres. The prop forward has an average gain of 8.26 metres a carry. Thompson has a huge presence on the field as he barrages his way through opposing defences.

9. Paul McShane

McShane is the top tackler in Super League with 1160 tackles, 95 more than Danny Houghton, the second highest tackler. A force in attack as well as defence, McShane has 27 try assists, 8 tries and has made 66 attacking kicks. Being the statistically the best hooker in Super League, McShane should have beaten James Roby to the Steve Prescott Man of Steel shortlist, the official Super League Dream Team. He omission to the England squad is also highly confusing.

10. Chris Hill

Having made 407 carries throughout the season, Hill has made the second highest number of carries for a prop forward behind Luke Thompson. With a toal of 3084 metres, the Warrington prop made an average gain of 7.58 metres a carry. This may have not been the highest in the league for prop fowards, his work rate is what has placed him in the team ahead of Scott Taylor, Paul Clough and Grant Millington.

11. John Bateman

The work horse of the Wigan Warriors side, Bateman has made 442 carries this season, making 3150 metres, with an average gain of 7.13 metres. He may not have scored many tries or got many assists but 64 offloads throughout the season has showed that Bateman is extremely difficult to wrap up in the tackle, backed up by his 118 tackle busts.

12. Zeb Taia

The sixth St Helens player in the squad is Zeb Taia to make this squad. With 414 carries the second-rower has racked up an impressive 2977 total metres with an average gain of 7.19 metres. With 8 tries and 6 assists, his efforts near the try line have been a huge contribution to Saints this season.

13. Louis McCarthy-Scarsbrook

The loose-forward has been an ever-present for the Saints this season and has led from the front with similar stats to Zeb Taia. Exactly 400 carries from McCarthy-Scarsbrook and a total average gain of 7.3 metres means that he has a total of 2922 metres. He has made 107 tackles from marker and also managed to get 4 tries this season.

Notable Mentions

James Roby – 265 Carries, 2160 metres, 8.15 average gain, 924 tackles.

Ben Jones-Bishop – 18 tries, 7.5 average gain, 26 clear breaks, 2369 metres

Matty Ashurst – 1058 tackles, 277 carries, 1916 metres, 8 clean breaks, 6.92 average gain

Scott Taylor – 338 carries, 2811 metres, 8.32 average gain

 

 

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