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John Drake

Member Since 10 Nov 2008
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Golden Boot Shortlist Published - Who Should Win?

21 November 2014 - 09:38 AM

Four Nations final man of the match Shaun Johnson is among six nominees for the 2014 Rugby League World Golden Boot, as revealed in issue 404 of Rugby League World Magazine, in shops & online now (get the app from Apple Newsstand or Google Play).

Kiwi scrum-half Johnson is joined on the list by team-mate Jesse Bromwich, Australian duo Greg Inglis and Johnathan Thurston and England forwards James Graham and Sam Burgess.

Burgess and eventual winner Thurston were also among the six nominees last year.

The same 13-man panel that chose Thurston will again vote for the winner and the World XIII, which will both be revealed in next month’s Rugby League World, out on Friday, December 19.

The panel is assembled from both sides of the world, and includes representatives from Australia, England, France and New Zealand. Among them is former Golden Boot winner Garry Schofield, ex-Great Britain coach Brian Noble and past Kiwi internationals Robbie Hunter-Paul and Daryl Halligan.

They are joined by leading journalists Dave Hadfield, Martyn Sadler, Dave Woods, Brad Walter, Louis Bonnery, Malcolm Andrews, Mitch Dale, Andrew Voss and Steve Mascord. The votes will be submitted during the first week in December.

“These are the six players who we feel have had the biggest impact on the sport during 2014,” Rugby League World editor Gareth Walker explained.

“Four of the contenders enjoyed outstanding Four Nations campaigns, including Shaun Johnson and Jesse Bromwich in the victorious New Zealand side. Johnson was the Kiwis’ go- to player throughout and produced a man of the match performance in the final, while Bromwich was statistically the leading forward by some distance both in the whole competition and in the Wellington decider against Australia.

“Greg Inglis had a superb domestic season and then stepped up to the plate with several of his most experienced teammates missing through injury for the Kangaroos, scoring in each group game. James Graham was England’s leading forward throughout the tournament, having played a major part in Canterbury Bulldogs reaching the NRL Grand Final.

“As always, we will ask our 13-man voting panel to consider performances at international level first and foremost, but such was the impact of both Sam Burgess and Johnathan Thurston in the NRL this season that we felt it was impossible to overlook either of them.

“Thurston did take part in an international game, earning the man of the match in the ANZAC Test win over New Zealand in May, before jointly winning the prestigious Dally M award in Australia for his performances for North Queensland Cowboys.

“Sam Burgess, of course, was unavailable for the Four Nations due to his move to rugby union. But his contribution to South Sydney’s NRL title win was considerable, not least in the Grand Final, when his man of the match display with a fractured cheekbone and eye socket was one of the most iconic Rugby League performances of the modern era.”

There are precedents for players having won the Golden Boot without having played internationals during the season - 1999 winner Andrew Johns missed the Tri-Nations that year, while Brett Kenny didn’t feature for Australia in 1985.

Hookers Daryl Clark and Cameron Smith, New Zealanders Keiran Foran and Jason Taumalolo and joint Dally M winner Jarryd Hayne were among other players that were considered before the final shortlist of six was confirmed.

 

THE 2014 GOLDEN BOOT SHORTLIST

 

Jesse Bromwich
Statistically the prop was the best forward in the Four Nations, not least in the final where his 23 carries yielded an outstanding 150 metres. His form both for club Melbourne Storm and New Zealand recently led ex-Australian test front rower Robbie Kearns to publicly state Bromwich could become a better player than respected former Kangaroo Glenn Lazarus.

 

Sam Burgess
Unavailable for the Four Nations following his switch to rugby union, he is included because of his huge impact on the NRL season in 2014 as South Sydney ended their long title drought. His performance in the Grand Final, after fracturing his eye socket and cheekbone in the first tackle, will live long in the memory.

James Graham
The workaholic, flamed-haired front rower led the Canterbury Bulldogs pack all the way to the 2014 NRL Grand Final. Then stepped up as England captain for the opening Four Nations game in the absence of Sean O’Loughlin, and was his side’s best forward for the whole tournament, getting through a mountain of work, most notably against Australia.

 

Greg Inglis
Another key figure in Souths’ NRL title win, providing a huge presence from fullback and scoring some of the most spectacular tries of recent years, most noticeably at Brisbane. With several other established players missing for Australia in the Four Nations he stepped up and scored in all three group games.

 

Shaun Johnson
Was instrumental in New Zealand Warriors’ midseason recovery in the NRL, but it was during the Four Nations that he really burst into life. Has matured into a halfback that can control a game as well as provide the spectacular plays, but showed his breathtaking pace in a man of the match performance in the final, including a brilliant try.

Johnathan Thurston
Missed the Four Nations through injury, but had already left his mark on the international scene by winning the man of the match in the ANZAC Test win over New Zealand. Domestically he was again outstanding, jointly winning the prestigious Dally M award with Jarryd Hayne after another terrific campaign with North Queensland Cowboys.

 

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Rugby League World - International Special

18 November 2014 - 02:54 PM

Rugby League World issue 404 is out on Friday 21st November.

Be amongst the first to find out which six players are on the 2014 Golden Boot shortlist in this issue!

Issue 404 is an International Special, not to be missed, with fantastic coverage of the Four Nations involving New Zealand, Australia, England and Samoa, plus the European Championships featuring Scotland, Wales, Ireland and France and special features on Rugby League developments in Papua New Guinea, South Africa and Canada too. Plus all your regular favourites.

Be ready for it - download the app now from Apple Newsstand or Google Play (check www.totalrl.com/rlw for other devices) or order a copy for delivery by post from www.totalrl.com/shop

 

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League Express - Four Nations Final Issue - Online Now

17 November 2014 - 12:43 AM

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Download the app from Apple Newsstand or Google Play or go to www.totalrl.com/le for the desktop version & info on availability on other devices.


The Golden Boot Shortlist

15 November 2014 - 04:00 PM

The Golden Boot Shortlist will be exclusively revealed in the next issue of Rugby League World, an international special out on 21st Nov.

 

Now all the season's domestic & international business is concluded, who do you think should be on the shortlist of six?

 

You can read about the history of the Golden Boot and all the past winners here.

 

You can order yourself a copy of Rugby League World - or a subscription - here or download the app for the digital edition from Apple Newsstand or Google Play.


Today's League Express

10 November 2014 - 10:01 AM

Today's League Express is in shops and online now.

 

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Download the League Express app from Apple Newsstand or Google Play or visit www.totalrl.com/le for the desktop & other digital versions.