Round 2 of the 2022 NRL delivered several nailbiting results and the emergence of representative bolters.
But it was again refereeing inconsistencies that dominated the narrative.
PAUL CRAWLEY reveals his likes and dislikes from round 2.
It seemed a curious decision for Jason Demetriou to bring up Anthony Milford following South Sydney’s loss to Melbourne.
And it certainly made me question if there a split in the camp over the call not to follow through with signing Milford as a back-up to Lachlan Ilias.
Of course Milford had agreed to join Souths for one season before the club went cold on the idea after Milford was involved in an off-field incident that is still before the courts.
Yet when Demetriou was asked how he thought Ilias’ partnership with Cody Walker was tracking he made a point of reminding everyone why the club wanted Milford in the first place.
“I think people forget Anthony Milford was signed here for this year and that was to take a bit of pressure off Lachie to allow him to grow into that role and he has been thrown into it,” Demetriou explained.
I don’t think anyone forgets, but again it was Souths who went cold on the deal.
Or was it the board and not the coaching staff?
It makes you wonder if everyone was on the same page.
The fact is Souths still don’t have a genuine back-up if Ilias does needs a rest at some point in the near future.
And the next two weeks aren’t going to get any easier with the grudge match against the Sydney Roosters followed by the grand final rematch against Penrith.
There is already speculation Latrell Mitchell could even be switched into the halves at some point.
Ilias was always going to be a long term project after the club made the call not to give Adam Reynolds a new deal and Demetriou conceded the Rabbitohs will need time to adjust.
I just hope Ilias doesn’t end up suffering a similar fate to what has happened to Kyle Flanagan at the Bulldogs.