Dally M Medal: Ultimate guide
Dally M Medal: Ultimate guide

Ultimate guide to Dally M Medal

Date: Wednesday October 2

Time: 8.30pm - 10pm

TV: Live on Fox League

Venue: Horden Pavilion, Moore Park, Sydney

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TEDESCO SET FOR FIRST DALLY M

The rise of the fullback is expected to continue on Wednesday night, with James Tedesco priced at a skinny $1.20 to win the Dally M Medal as the NRL's best player.

It would make it back-to-back wins for fullbacks after Roger Tuivasa-Sheck stormed the field in 2018, and would be the eighth time a No.1 has taken out Australian rugby league's most prestigious individual award.

Of the top six contenders in line to take out the Dally M Award, only Cowboys lock Jason Taumalolo ($26) does not play in the spine.

Melbourne hooker Cameron Smith ($6.00) is expected to be Tedesco's biggest rival, while Warriors fullback Tuivasa-Sheck ($19) is a chance of going back-to-back.

2018 Dally M team of the year headed by winner Roger Tuivasa-Sheck (centre). Also in the team are (L-R) Josh Jackson (second rower), Cameron Munster (five-eighth), Jazz Tevaga (interchange), Damien Cook (hooker), Luke Brooks (halfback) and Andrew Fifita (prop).
2018 Dally M team of the year headed by winner Roger Tuivasa-Sheck (centre). Also in the team are (L-R) Josh Jackson (second rower), Cameron Munster (five-eighth), Jazz Tevaga (interchange), Damien Cook (hooker), Luke Brooks (halfback) and Andrew Fifita (prop).

Tedesco would become the latest in a long line of fullbacks to win the top gong, with Mick Potter (1984 and 1991), Jarryd Hayne (2009 and 2014), Billy Slater (2009), Ben Barba (2012) and Tuivasa-Sheck (2018) previous winners.

Preston Campbell also switched between fullback and halfback in his 2001 victory.

Smith is in contention to bag a hat-trick of Dally M wins after claiming the award in 2006 and 2017.

Cameron Smith poses with his 2017 Dally M Medal.
Cameron Smith poses with his 2017 Dally M Medal.

DALLY M BETTING (via LADBROKES)

James Tedesco $1.20

Cameron Smith $6.00

Mitchell Moses $15

Roger Tuivasa-Sheck $19

Cameron Munster $23

Jason Taumalolo $26

Damien Cook $34

Fox Sports host Hannah Hollis and Roosters fullback James Tedesco prepare for last year’s awards. Picture: Justin Lloyd
Fox Sports host Hannah Hollis and Roosters fullback James Tedesco prepare for last year’s awards. Picture: Justin Lloyd

DALLY M ROUND 12 LEADERBOARD

Mitchell Pearce 15

Cameron Munster 14

Damien Cook 14

Jason Taumalolo 12

Cameron Smith 12

James Tedesco 12

Mitchell Moses 11

Cody Walker 10

Clint Gutherson 10

Chad Townsend 10

Payne Haas 10

Sam Burgess 10

Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad 10

John Bateman 9

Cameron Murray 9

Siosiua Taukehaio 9

Roger Tuivasa-Sheck 9

* Votes went behind closed doors after Round 12

Fox Sports presenters (L-R) Lara Pitt, Hannah Hollis, Jessica Yates and Yvonne Sampson arrive at the 2018 Dally M Awards in Sydney.
Fox Sports presenters (L-R) Lara Pitt, Hannah Hollis, Jessica Yates and Yvonne Sampson arrive at the 2018 Dally M Awards in Sydney.

EXPERT PREDICTIONS

News Corp Australia's team of rugby league experts have put in their votes for the NRL's night of nights.

Sydney Roosters fullback James Tedesco romped home in taking the top gong with all but one vote. But there are plenty of contentious calls over coach of the year and team of the year.

COACH OF THE YEAR CONTENDERS

Rugby league writers Phil Rothfield and Fatima Kdouh have backed Canberra coach Ricky Stuart to take out the best coach gong.

"It depends if you judge it over the 25 rounds," Rothfield said on The Monday Bunker. "I'm coming in late and because of that I'm going with Ricky Stuart for lifting Canberra. But what Hasler and Arthur did was just phenomenal."

Kdouh added: "Ricky Stuart has had the toughest job of all because he's given the Raiders a completely new identity. It could easily have taken a season or two, but it didn't. He managed to make it happen in a four month pre-season."

The contenders are Craig Bellamy ($1.80), Des Hasler ($2.36), Stuart ($6), Brad Arthur ($23) and Trent Robinson ($34).

ROOKIE OF THE YEAR CONTENDERS

Payne Haas: Despite making his debut in 2018, Haas is still eligible to be league's greatest new blood. The Broncos' big man stormed on to the State of Origin scene for the Blues this year. The 19-year-old was selected to play for NSW after just 10 NRL games and helped secure a famous series win.

Maika Sivo: Signed on a minimum wage deal from Penrith, Sivo stormed the NRL to become the season's top try scorer. A flying Fijian with a sledgehammer fend, the 25-year-old became arguably the Eels' most popular player.

 

Maika Sivo quickly became a cult hero in his debut season.
Maika Sivo quickly became a cult hero in his debut season.

Bronson Xerri: At just 18, Xerri became an instant sensation when he burned down the flank to show his stunning speed in his NRL debut. The Cronulla junior has since established himself as one of the fastest men in rugby league and a genuine rival for Josh Addo-Carr and James Roberts. His left foot step is dynamite.

Briton Nikora: Fellow Shark Nikora became a New Zealand Test player in his first season. Possessing footwork and speed rarely seen in a forward, the 21-year-old is the prototype for a new wave of edge players.

Ryan Papenhuyzen: This 21-year-old flyer came from nowhere to become the heir apparent for Billy Slater at the Melbourne Storm. With blistering speed and a knack for the sensational, Craig Bellamy dropped starting halfback Brodie Croft to make way for Papenhuyzen in a bold reshuffle.

Ryan Papenhuyzen started the year as third string fullback but ended as first choice.
Ryan Papenhuyzen started the year as third string fullback but ended as first choice.

DALLY M HONOUR ROLL

1979 Steve Morris

1980 Robert Laurie

1981 Steve Rogers

1982 Ray Price

1983 Terry Lamb

1984 Michael Potter

1985 Greg Alexander

1986 Peter Sterling

1987 Peter Sterling

1988 Gavin Miller

1989 Gavin Miller

1990 Cliff Lyons

1991 Michael Potter

1992 Gary Freeman

1993 Ricky Stuart

1994 Cliff Lyons

1995 Laurie Daley

1996 Allan Langer

1997 Not Awarded

1998 Andrew Johns

1999 Andrew Johns

Dragons NRLW player Kezie Apps pictured in Wollongong ahead of the Dally M Awards. Picture: Dylan Robinson
Dragons NRLW player Kezie Apps pictured in Wollongong ahead of the Dally M Awards. Picture: Dylan Robinson

2000 Trent Barrett

2001 Preston Campbell

2002 Andrew Johns

2003 Not awarded due to industrial action

2004 Danny Buderus

2005 Johnathan Thurston

2006 Cameron Smith

2007 Johnathan Thurston

2008 Matt Orford

2009 Jarryd Hayne

2010 Todd Carney

2011 Billy Slater

2012 Ben Barba

2013 Cooper Cronk

2014 Jarryd Hayne and Johnathan Thurston

2015 Johnathan Thurston

2016 Cooper Cronk and Jason Taumalolo

2017 Cameron Smith

2018 Roger Tuivasa-Sheck