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NRL: Who makes up a winning team?

By Wayne Heming

APN SPORTS BUREAU

RUGBY LEAGUE: It used to be you couldn't win a premiership without a great halfback.

Now it seems the most important part of a champion team is its spine.

So as we enter the first round of the 2015 finals series we take a look at spines of the eight surviving clubs which all boast quality players in the key 1-6-7-9 positions which make up the spine, such a vital cog in each team's performance.

So, which of the eight finalists has the best spine, and will that team deliver its fans a premiership in October.

ROOSTERS:

(Minor premiers; 18-6 40 pts). Fullback: Roger Tuivasa-Scheck. Tries: 11; Line breaks: 14; Try assists: 12; Rating 9. Five-eighth: James Maloney. T: 9; LB: 9; TA: 9; Rating: 7.5. Halfback: Jackson Hastings. T: 1; LB: 1; TA: 2; Rating 7. Hooker: Jake Friend. T: 2; LB:3; TA:5; Rating: 8.

 

BRONCOS:

(2nd; 17-7 38 pts): Fullback: Darius Boyd T 2; LB: 5; TA: 7; Rating 7.5. Five-eighth: Anthony Milford: T: 11; LB: 11; TA: 14; Rating 8. Halfback: Ben Hunt: T 10; LB: 8; TA: 14; Rating 8. Hooker: Andrew McCullough. T 4; LB: 2; TA: 4; Rating: 8.

 

COWBOYS:

(3rd; 17-7 38 pts): Fullback : Lachlan Coote. T: 6; LB: 12; TA: 13; Rating 8. Five-eighth: Michael Morgan. T: 11; LB:17; TA: 18; Rating 7.5. Halfback: Johnathan Thurston: T 3; LB: 3; TA: 28; Rating: 8.5. Hooker: Jake Granville: T: 10; LB: 10; TA: 7; Rating: 8.5.

STORM:

(4th; 14-10 32 pts): Fullback: Cameron Munster. T: 7; LB: 8; TA: 4; Rating: 8. Five-eighth: Blake Green. T 8; LB: 8; TA: 17; Rating: 7.5. Halfback: Cooper Cronk. T: 4; LB: 5; TA: 15; Rating: 7.5. Hooker: Cameron Smith. T: 1; LB: 1; TA: 10; Rating: 8.

BULLDOGS:

(5th; 14-10 32 pts): Fullback: Brett Morris. T 8; LB: 11; TA: 3; Rating: 7.5. Five-eighth: Josh Reynolds: T: 3; LB: 11; TA: 3; Rating: 7. Halfback: Moses Mbye. T 3; LB: 5; TA:10; Rating 8. Hooker: Damien Cook. T: 3. LB: 3; TA: 1; Rating 7.5.

SHARKS:

(6th; 14-10 32 pts): Fullback: Michael Gordon. T: 4; LB: 5; TA: 4; Rating 7. Five-eighth: Jack Bird. T: 7; LB: 5; TA: 7; Rating 7.5. Halfback: Jeff Robson. T 1; LB: 1; TA: 5; Rating 7. Hooker: Michael Ennis. T: 3; LB: 2; TA 16; Rating 8.

RABBITOHS:

(7th; 13-11 30 pts): Fullback: Greg Inglis. T: 8; LB: 12; TA: 13; Rating: 7.5. Five-eighth: Luke Keary. T: 4; LB: 5; TA: 9; Rating: 7. Halfback: Adam Reynolds. T: 1; LB:1; TA: 9; Rating: 7. Hooker: Cameron McInnes. T: 1; LB: 4; TA: 0; Rating 6.

DRAGONS:

(8th; 12-12 28 pts): Fullback: Josh Dugan: T: 7; LB 10; TA 2;. Rating: 8. Five-eighth: Drew Hutchison. T: 0; LB:0; TA: 1; Rating: 6. Halfback: Benji Marshall: T 3; LB: 5; TA: 22; Rating 7.5. Hooker: Mitch Rein. T: 6; LB: 6; TA: 5; Rating 8.

 

 

Points: Cowboys: 32.5. Roosters 31.5. Brisbane: 31.5. Melbourne:31. Canterbury 30. St George Illawarra 29.5, Cronulla: 29 and South Sydney 27.5.

The ratings have been done on each player's performances this season, not on their career form.

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