Brits Down Under: Young back with a bang, Bateman top tackler, Pearce-Paul winning

Drew Darbyshire
Dom Young, Tom Burgess, John Bateman, Kai Pearce-Paul NRL Alamy

Dom Young, Tom Burgess, John Bateman and Kai Pearce-Paul in NRL action

Round 8 of the NRL season is complete, with England internationals Dom Young, John Bateman and Kai Pearce-Paul impressing.

Brits Down Under is a weekly feature here on Love Rugby League in 2024, checking out how the NRL‘s British players get on every week.

Here is a brief recap from Round 8, with Canterbury Bulldogs the team with the bye this week..

Dom Young

The towering winger made his return for the Roosters in their 60-18 demolition of the Dragons having served his two-match suspension. Young came back with a bang, finishing up as the game’s top metre maker, with an impressive 222 metres from 18 carries, including three line breaks and a try.

Tom Burgess

The England test prop played 35 minutes across two stints in South Sydney’s 54-20 defeat at Melbourne. Burgess produced 77 metres from nine carries whilst making 19 tackles in defence. Whilst he produced nine hit ups with the ball in hand, he missed five tackles in defence as the Rabbitohs went down to a heavy defeat.

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John Bateman

The former Wigan Warriors forward played the full game in the Wests’ 34-10 home defeat to Brisbane. He was the top tackler: 45 produced across the 80 minutes, with an impressive 97 per cent tackle efficiency. Bateman also made 118 metres from 17 carries whilst making three offloads in what was an outstanding individual display.

Kai Pearce-Paul

Another 80 minutes under the belt of Pearce-Paul, who is seemingly growing in confidence with every game that he plays in the NRL. The England international delivered a strong performance in Newcastle’s win over the Dolphins, making 142 metres from 18 carries and 27 tackles, with a tackle efficiency of 87 per cent.

Morgan Smithies

Smithies and his Canberra Raiders side were on the end of a hiding in a 40-0 home defeat to Cronulla Sharks. The Wigan Warriors academy product played 63 minutes in total, making 105 metres from 16 carries as well as 37 tackles. Smithies also made 15 passes in his ball-playing role at 13.

NRL Round 8 results

New Zealand Warriors 24-27 Gold Coast Titans

St George Illawarra Dragons 18-60 Sydney Roosters

Melbourne Storm 54-20 South Sydney Rabbitohs

Manly Sea Eagles 32-18 Parramatta Eels

Wests Tigers 10-34 Brisbane Broncos

North Queensland Cowboys 20-26 Penrith Panthers

Dolphins 14-18 Newcastle Knights

Canberra Raiders 0-40 Cronulla Sharks

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