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Morgan Smithies new Super League tackle record


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I topped 70 tackles once. It was one of my better seasons!

What an effort, 72 tackles in 62 minutes. A fine  player already at only 18 years of age.

And typical of this forum someone tries to rubbish a positive story for the game,dear me.

I didn't get a chance to watch this game live and so I have just had a nice lazy morning catching up with it.

Because he is a great young talent and particularly because of this thread I took note of Smithies contribution. 

Yes, there were a few tackles where he wasn't heavily involved that may have been added to his count but the vast vast majority of tackles Smithies was involved in saw him make a significant physical contribution. 

For an 18 year to play in a game of that type and not only hold his own but be one of the best forwards on the park was an incredible effort and there should be nothing but praise for him from us.

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As well in comparisons to Steele Retchless tackle counts then were made in exactly the same way as now. If analysis was done then I would be certain there would be little difference in terms of proportions when it comes to the type of tackle made. Also even 3rd/4th man in is still very physically demanding as you are still wresting someone to the floor, hitting the deck yourself, getting up and retreating 10 metres. Its exhausting and a great effort no matter how you try and analyse it.

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10 hours ago, Denton Rovers RLFC said:

Does it count as a tackle if you're 3rd/4th man in?

I don't doubt that MS was involved in 72 tackles, but I would put a few quid on the fact that Steele Retchless had more involvement in stopping the opponent in his record than MS did in his.

 

Yes it does but it was counted exactly the same way when Retchless set the record. 

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Very impressed with Smithies he seems to be the pick of those three young players that seem to be working as a pack for Wigan. So much so that I think any team that’s going to knock Wigan out will be looking at how they can slow these lads down a bit. At the minute they are playing with no fear or respect for any forward on the opposition which for Wigan is great. Someone needs to hit them hard ( legally) just to set them on their heels a bit make them think twice. Up to know no ones either done that or more likely been able to do that. Will be interesting to see wether Walmesley or Thomson can have any effect this week but neither are the type of player that could cut you in two with a well timed tackle. I wonder if Wigan will loan us Leulai for the weekend. 

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10 hours ago, Denton Rovers RLFC said:

Does it count as a tackle if you're 3rd/4th man in?

I don't doubt that MS was involved in 72 tackles, but I would put a few quid on the fact that Steele Retchless had more involvement in stopping the opponent in his record than MS did in his.

 

And typical of this forum someone tries to rubbish a positive story for the game,dear me.

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It’s difficult to find words to describe just how good Smithies is at 18 years old.

He doesn’t look like an 18 year old at all. He looks like a seasoned pro and a leader. Frightening how good he could become in his prime. He’s already one of the top 3 number 13’s in the comp for me. 

He’s a defensive machine and very skilful with ball in hand as well. 

To break a long standing record like that is absolutely incredible at his age. 

I’d be tempted to do what Wigan did with Farrell and Leeds did with Sinfield.... give him the captaincy at a young age.

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14 minutes ago, Cdd said:

It’s difficult to find words to describe just how good Smithies is at 18 years old.

He doesn’t look like an 18 year old at all. He looks like a seasoned pro and a leader. Frightening how good he could become in his prime. He’s already one of the top 3 number 13’s in the comp for me. 

He’s a defensive machine and very skilful with ball in hand as well. 

To break a long standing record like that is absolutely incredible at his age. 

I’d be tempted to do what Wigan did with Farrell and Leeds did with Sinfield.... give him the captaincy at a young age.

If you can see that mate, then the NRL clubs will be all over that like the were with the Burgess boys. He will be on about 30k at the moment so Wigan want to be very careful how they manage it. £250k to an NRL club is nothing (even for a 19-20 year-old).

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1 hour ago, Cdd said:

It’s difficult to find words to describe just how good Smithies is at 18 years old.

He doesn’t look like an 18 year old at all. He looks like a seasoned pro and a leader. Frightening how good he could become in his prime. He’s already one of the top 3 number 13’s in the comp for me. 

He’s a defensive machine and very skilful with ball in hand as well. 

To break a long standing record like that is absolutely incredible at his age. 

I’d be tempted to do what Wigan did with Farrell and Leeds did with Sinfield.... give him the captaincy at a young age.

The Wigan player pathway/ production system is the best in the world in either rugby code , including the NRL.

Smithies strikes me as  a talent  in the  Phil Clarke /  Andy  Farrell / Gregory ( mIke )  mould. Not a tackling machine  (he wants  of course to impress ) though he is undoubtedly gaining respect there. Maybe an Andy  Platt type ?

But in Shaun O'loughlin he has the best coach you could ever want. Give him time to breath, He's still a kid.... A game organiser from the back of the pack will be the measure of him and could well put him up with the best....

 A definite  for me  No 13 shirt in the old days.....

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14 hours ago, Denton Rovers RLFC said:

Does it count as a tackle if you're 3rd/4th man in?

I don't doubt that MS was involved in 72 tackles, but I would put a few quid on the fact that Steele Retchless had more involvement in stopping the opponent in his record than MS did in his.

 

I don't know what the exact criteria is, but I think it's really just any tackle you are involved in. Be it a one on one or coming in as 4th man to grab a leg.

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1 hour ago, DoubleD said:

Is it? 

I would argue Siddal actually is, which of course is where Morgan has come through from

100% this! 

No doubt clubs like Wigan, Leeds, Saints do have amazing academies from age 15+ but it far too often gets overlooked the work done by the amateur clubs for the 6/7 years before that and just gets worded in the media (and by many fans) as ‘X’ player being a product of <insert SL club> academy, which is plain wrong.

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Morgan Smithies has been knocking people over since he was eight years old.  My lad played in "that" Siddal junior team (the one that only ever got beaten twce in eight years) and I used to tell him to make as many tackles as Morgan....which he never managed, of course.  So thats Smithies, Borough, Holroyd and Dean from that team who have all made their Super League debuts.  Amazing. I remember once when some of the Siddal lads who also played a bit of Union (Smithies played Union a year up) went for some England RU Development squad selection when they were about 13 or 14.  Smithies wasn't selected when a heck of a lot of worse players were (well, let's face it , pretty much all of them were not as good as him).  I bet those set of RU  talent scouts feel slightly stupid when they now see him getting stuck into Kasiano, Bird, etc. 

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On 21/09/2019 at 14:32, Oliver Clothesoff said:

the stats suggesting that Salford’s forwards made a higher average gain than the Wigan forwards. I’m a little shocked by that,

Don't be it's just the Universe righting itself and everything returning to the way life should be.

Dare to Dream!

 

 

 

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Unless I'm missing summat, as usual, the Dull Daily Wail reckons he beat a record held jointly by Malcolm Alker and Danny Houghton...

https://www.hulldailymail.co.uk/sport/rugby-league/super-league-record-morgan-smithies-3348909

And where's Kris Welham in that list?

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1 hour ago, Old Frightful said:

Unless I'm missing summat, as usual, the Dull Daily Wail reckons he beat a record held jointly by Malcolm Alker and Danny Houghton...

https://www.hulldailymail.co.uk/sport/rugby-league/super-league-record-morgan-smithies-3348909

And where's Kris Welham in that list?

It mentions about the Opta stats started recording in 2003, and I think Steele Retchless initially set his record in 1998? IIRC.

Could have something to do with Opta, but didn't the Super League twitter account comment that the record was previously held by Retchless? Rather than it having being beaten twice since?

Strange.

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On 22/09/2019 at 09:44, Damien said:

As well in comparisons to Steele Retchless tackle counts then were made in exactly the same way as now. If analysis was done then I would be certain there would be little difference in terms of proportions when it comes to the type of tackle made. Also even 3rd/4th man in is still very physically demanding as you are still wresting someone to the floor, hitting the deck yourself, getting up and retreating 10 metres. Its exhausting and a great effort no matter how you try and analyse it.

Completely agree. It never claims one on one tackles. 

I would add however that this is why RL and RU tackles per game should never be compared, as the criteria is completely different. 

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On 22/09/2019 at 06:11, Jim Prendle said:

Go on then, prove it.

Given the propensity of 3/4 man tackles with 3rd and 4th coming in late much more prevelent than when Retchless was playing IMO I reckon it's so, I can't absolutely prove it but it's what I beleive. It's still a fantastic effort but 3rd/4th man in tacklers shouldn't count on the tackle stats IMO.

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Before everyone creams themselves over this, there are other things that need to be considered.

Firstly, that's a lot of tackles and fair play to him fir making them. He looks a great prospect, however...

  • How many were dominant and how many were passive?
  • How many misses?
  • How many were first contact, 2nd, 3rd?
  • Why was he making so many? Was he breaking the structure and taking off after people when he didn't need to or were Salford spotting him (more likely)
  • How did it impact him carrying the footy? Poorly by the sounds of it.

Making a lot of tackles isn't necessarily a good thing. Someone is going to make a tackle, just depends who, particularly in the middle. The fact he made so many suggests to me that Salford highlighted him as a weak link and the game plan involved running at him. Sounds like it worked as Salford got on top of the Wigan forwards quite a lot, something many people have mentioned without joining the dots.

I'm not saying this isn't a good effort but it shouldn't really be lauded as something it's not. Players making a lot of tackles don't really have a choice do they.

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10 minutes ago, Tex Evans Thigh said:

Before everyone creams themselves over this, there are other things that need to be considered.

Firstly, that's a lot of tackles and fair play to him fir making them. He looks a great prospect, however...

  • How many were dominant and how many were passive?
  • How many misses?
  • How many were first contact, 2nd, 3rd?
  • Why was he making so many? Was he breaking the structure and taking off after people when he didn't need to or were Salford spotting him (more likely)
  • How did it impact him carrying the footy? Poorly by the sounds of it.

Making a lot of tackles isn't necessarily a good thing. Someone is going to make a tackle, just depends who, particularly in the middle. The fact he made so many suggests to me that Salford highlighted him as a weak link and the game plan involved running at him. Sounds like it worked as Salford got on top of the Wigan forwards quite a lot, something many people have mentioned without joining the dots.

I'm not saying this isn't a good effort but it shouldn't really be lauded as something it's not. Players making a lot of tackles don't really have a choice do they.

Not sure if you watched the game Tex but I watched the game late and after this thread started as I couldn't watch it live.

I wouldn't say that Salford particularly targeted Smithies and he didn't appear to break the from the Wigan defensive structure.  I wouldn't say he dominated every tackle he made but I also thought he more than held his own in a very tough game of rugby.

To be honest, he just worked really hard and contributed massively to a gutsy win.

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On 22/09/2019 at 15:59, hunsletgreenandgold said:

100% this! 

No doubt clubs like Wigan, Leeds, Saints do have amazing academies from age 15+ but it far too often gets overlooked the work done by the amateur clubs for the 6/7 years before that and just gets worded in the media (and by many fans) as ‘X’ player being a product of <insert SL club> academy, which is plain wrong.

Which is why it was important to have the amateur club players came through mentioned/in print, certainly Ray French was one of the few to always mention this.

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