8 players that can win their club a Shute Shield premiership in the next two weeks
A lot needs to go right to win a Shute Shield premiership.
If you’re able to secure a spot up the top half of the ladder after 18 rounds, you need close to a full strength side on the field to be any chance in the playoffs.
If you manage that, you then need to produce three of your best performances of the season in three consecutive weeks and then hope its good enough to get you over the line.
There’s not a lot between the four remaining sides in the Shute Shield premiership so ahead of this weekend’s preliminary finals at North Sydney Oval, we thought we’d take a look at a few key figures who can win their team a comp in less than two weeks time.
Harry Potter – Sydney University
The most dangerous attacking player in the competition, Potter has made a mockery of defences throughout 2019 playing on the end of a slick Uni backline.
The Students averaged close to 40 points a match throughout the regular season, with Potter leading the way with 11 tries.
Nox Muliufi – Eastwood
Most would expect Tayler Adams to feature somewhere on this list and to be fair he probably should.
But for Adams to fire, he needs his big mate outside of him to break the advantage line to give Adams’ front foot ball to play with.
Muliufi has had no problem doing so so far this season and Woodies fans will be hoping that can continue in the weeks ahead.
Hugh Sinclair – Northern Suburbs
Hugh Sinclair has had a frustrating season, sitting on the edges of the Waratahs squad but returns for another big finals match at North Sydney Oval this weekend.
Facing a star studded Uni pack, Sinclair will need to inspire his forwards to at least gain parity with the Students or it could be a tough afternoon for the home side.
Harry Johnson-Holmes, Tom Horton, Chris Talakai – Sydney University Front Row
If the University scrum fires, it’s going to be very, very tough to stop the Students from winning back to back Shute Shield titles.
The front row of Johnson-Holmes, Horton and Talakai is as formidable as it comes and if they gain dominance this week or next, the Uni scrum and Jake Gordon will be close to impossible to stop.
Boyd Killingworth – Warringah
Killingworth has been brilliant for the Rats since returning from the Sevens circuit and he’ll be particularly important in the coming weeks.
Eastwood have struggled at times at the breakdown throughout 2019 and Killingworth could cause them plenty of headaches this weekend.
If the Rats do play their way into a final against Uni, Killingworth’s ability to slow the ball at the breakdown will be vital.
Harry Burey – Northern Suburbs
Arguably the most underrated back in the competition, Harry Burey can just about do it all and he’ll need to this weekend if Norths are to upset Uni.
The Shoreman have plenty of attacking spark across the park but Burey is often the glue that brings it all together.
It’s hard to see Norths winning unless they can score 30 plus points, they might even need more, meaning Burey and the Norths’ backs will need to have an afternoon to remember.
Josh Holmes – Warringah
He might be 32 years old but Josh Holmes is still the first player every opposition coach talks about before a match against the Rats.
And for good reason.
As he’s done time and time again, Holmes can break the game open at the drop of a hat and is one of four outstanding starting No.9s left in the competition.
The battle at the base of the scrum over the next fortnight will be fascinating to watch.
Mick Snowden – Eastwood
The veteran No.9 knows what this time of year is all about, having led the Woodies to a flag back in 2015.
Snowden may not be as dynamic as some of the other No.9s left in the finals, but he’s a true footballer who rarely puts a foot wrong and knows how to break a game open.