The Cumberland Throw

Team List Tuesday – RSVPs For The Carty Party Edition

NRL Team List


When word of Bryce Cartwright’s return to training last week got out, fans questioned just how far off he would be from returning from a preseason jaw fracture.  Well folks, I have some absolutely terrible news to lead this week’s edition of TLT with…the Vengabus Carty Party will have to wait at least one more week longer in the NRL.

The good news however is that Bryce Cartwright is back from a preseason jaw fracture and will play in a televised NSW Cup game on Monday. Plenty of eyebrows were raised when Brad Arthur recruited the mercurial backrower (including mine) but after a consistently strong showing in the preseason I am now curious and even excited to see what the fit is for the Carty Party at Parramatta. There might not be a Carty Party in the NRL but he will be the headline act in the NSW Cup no doubt and now is the time to be RSVP-ing for that future NRL shindig!

The news doesn’t end there for the Eels on this particular TLT. The needle quickly swings to overwhelmingly positive as Ryan Matterson and Mitchell Moses both clear concussion protocols to take the places in the starting roster. Thankfully in Matterson’s case he didn’t manifest similar symptoms to his concussion last year. Given that the Eels had a massive turnaround between the Round 2 Thursday game and the Round 4 Monday game, he was able to make a successful recovery.

The remainder of the team breakdown is relatively straightforward this week. Marata Niukore continues to have the right centre position on lockdown after consecutive dominant outings against the Storm and Sharks. With that said, perhaps the Wests Tigers may be tempted to send Daine Laurie to his side given that the speed of Will Kennedy tested ‘Simba’ on Saturday night.

With Matterson back as a starter, Isaiah Papali’i shifts back to the bench – forcing someone out. That particular someone happens to be Keegan Hipgrave this week with Ray Stone deservedly winning the final spot on the bench after a terrific performance against Cronulla.

The Wests Tigers put a troublesome opening two rounds of the NRL behind them with an upset away victory over the Newcastle Knights in Round 3. While the Eels have matched up well against the feline franchise in recent times, having won the last five encounters, their result against Newcastle is a timely reminder about the volatility of the NRL.

Parramatta will be heavy favourites for this one – and with good reason – but they need to take care of business the same way they did against the Melbourne Storm. Professionals have standards. Be polite. Be efficient. Have a plan to kill everyone you meet. Okay not quite that far but they DO have standards they need to keep meeting!


1. Clinton Gutherson ©
2. Maika Sivo
3. Tom Opacic
4. Marata Niukore
5. Blake Ferguson
6. Dylan Brown
7. Mitchell Moses
8. Reagan Campbell-Gillard
9. Reed Mahoney
10. Junior Paulo
11. Shaun Lane
12. Ryan Matterson
13. Nathan Brown
14. Oregon Kaufusi
15. Isaiah Papali’i
16. Will Smith
17. Ray Stone
18. Jordan Rankin
19. Haze Dunster
20. Keegan Hipgrave
21. Bryce Cartwright


NSW Cup Team List


After byes and rescheduling delayed them over half a month for their opening game the Eels posted a first-up win in the NSW Cup over the Newtown Jets. The 22-20 victory featured more than a smidge of heart palpitations as a young Eels team nearly dropped a 22-point lead but the result is to be celebrated. The Eels were not exactly flush with troops heading into the Round 3 fixture against the Jets. Throw in the general inexperience of the roster and you have a haphazard concoction. With young talents like Haze Dunster and Will Penisini stepping up alongside senior leaders like Jordan Rankin helping guide them they delivered big time.

Now they move on to the Western Suburbs Magpies in the curtain raiser to the Easter Monday NRL feature. Ryan Carr’s squad this week features an unchanged backline but there are reinforcements to be had in the backrow. Keegan Hipgrave and Bryce Cartwright will bring plenty of excitement to the pack. Hipgrave gives the back much greater solidity while Bryce is legitimate difference maker here with his play-making.

This game will be televised on Foxtel I believe so if you can’t make it out to the Easter Monday derby you can look forward to two full games of coverage on the public holiday!


1. Sean Russell
2. Solomone Naiduki
3. Will Penisini
4. Tim Lafai
5. Haze Dunster
6. Jordan Rankin
7. Jakob Arthur
8. Dave Hollis
9. Joey Lussick
10. Makahesi Makatoa
11. Keegan Hipgrave
12. Bryce Cartwright
13. Ky Rodwell
14. Nathaniel Roache
15. Toa Mataáfa
16. Elie El-Zakhem
17. Grant Taulafo
18. Noel Aukafolau


Jersey Flegg Team List


The Flegg were the only senior grade to suffer defeat last week, narrowly losing out 26-18 to the Sharks at McCredie Park. Tyrone Harding and Matt Dragosic featured as surprise new recruits in that game and they return in Round 4 to take on the Wests Tigers at Campbelltown on Monday. They aren’t the only new faces in the team though with Fruean Easthope and Lennox Whittaker also popping off the week’s team sheet to my eyes.

Like the Eels, the Tigers have played just the one game in 2021 in Flegg. However, they comprehensively dispatched of the Melbourne Thunderbolts 50-12 last week and obviously have the better tracking heading into this clash. Still, Flegg games can swing wildly from week-to-week and even within the game itself and the Eels have every chance to post a win here.


1. Tyrone Harding
2. Fruean Easthope
3. Peni Tohi
4. Jayden Skinner
5. Marli Townsend
6. Clayton Faulalo
7. Tevita Massima
8. Aitasi James
9. Kyle Schneider
10. Jack Colovatti
11. Oliver Clements
12. Charbel Tasipale
13. Jayden Yates
14. Ethan Le Blanc
15. Lennox Whittaker
16. Matt Dragosic
17. Valance Harris
18. Mark Tepu-Smith

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Jack siddle

Did anyone watch last weeks flegg game v Sharks..?


I saw the first half Jack, but had to leave to get organised for Bankwest Stadium. Really solid first half from Parra. Got run down late.

Jack Siddle

Any thoughts on the game..?


To be honest, I didn’t see enough. However I thought that the new recruit from the Dogs – Harding – caught the eye with his pace.


Great team list.Last couple of years Oregon was really just making up the numbers but he has been really good so far this year.The interesting thing in the next few weeks depending on injuries, will be does Cartright take Stones spot(as long as Bryce is a standout in essentially his trial games in NSW cup) or does he replace Will Smith as utility?
Tune in next week to find out (or maybe the week after).


Eggman, Will Smith’s form plus the circumstances have almost made him an essential pick. Oggy has literally announced himself, and I believe I tipped him for a breakout year.


Was thinking the other day,they say playmakers mature around 26,and you know,Will Smith could have gone to another level, hes on 70 odd fg games,certainly playing well.Needs to work on those left to right passes though.


I did notice that turn of the back to throw left to right.

Mr controversy aka rev

Who drops off the bench next week when or if Cartwright is selected ?
Again who drops off again when waqa is back ?

If any of these happens I’m tipping stone n smith out.
On the tiger’s match we can’t take them lightly but if we are to beat them We must play thru the middle with offloading at will to tire them out.


Through the middle, Rev, through the middle.


Good to see Matto and Moses have passed HIA protocols, we won’t take chances if there’s any risk. I like the bench, strong middles with speed available thru Stone & Smith. The Eels are a boggy team for the Tigers, look forward to that continuing.


I’m confident it will DDay – I’m nominating a margin of 6-12 points.


What has become of Sam Hughes???

Ken 70,

Do think if we lose junior or Campbell,Gillard where lite on big middle forwards same as centre now blake out long term,,,


There’s been a big Cowboys player announced today, young Gregg who played for the Maori team in the Allstars. He’s added to the depth.


When I watched Allstars I was like,who is this kid?unsigned,yet to debut,he was a beast against quality could be a very good signing.I guess Kidwell coaching the Maori team may have helped get his signature, well done.

John Eel

Grieg the player you mention, like all BA middles is big and has an offload.


It will be interesting to track his progress.

John Eel

This is a good side. If they follow the game plan and we play through the middle we should take the Tigers. Like all Eels fans I am interested to see how Bryce goes in his first hit out in an Eels jumper in NSW Cup. In the game last week they seemed to tire a bit at the back end of the game. They should be better for the run and the addition of the experienced NRL players. The RCG try was interesting last week going JP to Marata to JP to RCG. All forwards notwithstanding Marata is filling… Read more »


John, as you would know those sorts of tries don’t just happen. The skills of the players have been developed to be able to link and create moments like that. It’s sensational to watch it unfold in a game.

Matthew Sweeney

Item of interest! I have looked over the 16 teams and the players 1 thru 17 named this week. 127 of them are either Indigenous or Pasifika against 145 non-indigenous/Pasifika. The way its headed the balance will be equal before long. I guess the Pasifika body type is a big factor along with the natural born agility and skill of the Indigenous players.


I guess that’s why the Indigenous All Star game is such a quality contest.

matthew sweeney

major factor


Always an entertaining game; and I believe Wests will be up there till the end in this one. Something tells me a bounce of the ball / one on one brilliance may decide our win. I hope.
We need the same tenacity in the middle and good discipline to withstand Wests early onslaught.


They always seem to charge like a bull out of the gate Milo. Harry
Grant added to that when we clashed last year, but our middle should, like last year, get the job done.

John Eel

Milo I think that it will be a close and hard contest as it usually is. However I think that the Eels are starting to come to grips with the BA game plan

I believe that should they follow the game plan the Eels will hold them out early and run over the top at the end.

How is that for optimism

Murray Cod

I’m with you on those points John Eel, it is wonderful to see our team play to a structure and a system that comes natural to them while still allowing our boys to play “off the cuff” when they see an opportunity in front of them. I also like the swap of our halves and backrowers to the other side. Smart decision and it’s actually showing promise on both sides of the field in A and D.

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