Monday's Expert - 2020 NRL Round 8

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Monday's Expert is back in 2020 - each week providing a full wrap of everything happening around the rugby league traps each Monday.

Each edition will include NRL match review charges & judiciary updates, our player of the year leaderboard, crowd stats, TV ratings and injury news.

First things first...

Our Round 8 wrap of NRL results can be found here. The full 2020 draw can be viewed here.

Match reports for NRL matches are here.

A huge thanks to the following legends for putting hard work into our weekly previews and live blogs of NRL games - Rob Crosby, Sam Bourke, Josh Robertson, Justin Davies, Andrew Jackson, Andrew Ferguson, Jeff Dickinson-Fox, Rick Edgerton, Paul Jobber, Jason Hosken, Adam Huxtable and Hamish Parker.

The Front Row - online rugby league magazine

Make sure you check out our exclusive match program & online magazine - THE FRONT ROW.

Last week's issue showcased Joe Stimson. You can check out the current edition plus back issues here.

Keep an eye out this Wednesday for Issue 7 (Round 9).

Match review

Two charges from Round 8 of the NRL.

Joey Leilua (Wests Tigers)

Grade 3 Dangerous Contact (head/neck)
78th min, on D Edwards (Panthers)
Base penalty 500 points
1 x non-similar prior offence last 2 years (20% loading)
Guilty / no contest = 600 points (6 matches)
Guilty - early plea = 450 points (4 matches)
PLEA: Guilty - early plea
OUTCOME: Suspended 4 matches. 50 carryover points accrued.

Addin Fonua-Blake (Sea Eagles)

Grade 3 Contrary Conduct
80th minute, on G Atkins (official)
Base penalty 300 points
1 x similar prior offence last 2 years (20% loading)
Guilty / no contest = 360 points (3 matches)
Guilty - early plea = 270 points (2 matches)
PLEA: Guilty - early plea
OUTCOME: Suspended 2 matches. 70 carryover points accrued.

The LU Leaderboard

At the conclusion of each match our reporters will choose their best three players from the match. You can views those points in each match in their respective match reports. Each week we'll update the leaderboard.

11 points - Tom Trbojevic (Sea Eagles), Cameron Smith (Storm), Brett Morris (Roosters)
10 points - Cameron Munster (Storm), Shaun Johnson (Sharks)
9 points - Mitchell Pearce (Knights), Nathan Cleary (Panthers), Jack Wighton (Raiders)
8 points - Jason Taumalolo (Cowboys), Adam Reynolds (Rabbitohs), Blake Green (Warriors)
7 points - Matthew Dufty (Dragons), James Tedesco (Roosters)
6 points - Luke Keary (Roosters), Latrell Mitchell (Rabbitohs), Stephen Crichton (Panthers), Dylan Brown (Eels), Matt Burton (Panthers)
5 points - Ashley Taylor (Titans), Harry Grant (Storm), David Klemmer (Knights), Clinton Gutherson (Eels), Will Hopoate (Bulldogs), Sione Katoa (Bulldogs), Jarrod Croker (Raiders), Kodi Nikorima (Warriors), Benji Marshall (Wests Tigers), Kalyn Ponga (Knights), Maika Sivo (Eels), Isaah Yeo (Panthers), Jahrome Hughes (Storm), Mitchell Moses (Eels), Luke Brooks (Wests Tigers), Daniel Saifiti (Knights)
4 points - Jarome Luai (Panthers), Kurt Mann (Knights), Dallin Watene-Zelezniak (Bulldogs), Shaun Lane (Eels), Daly Cherry-Evans (Sea Eagles), George Williams (Raiders), David Nofoaluma (Wests Tigers), Curtis Sironen (Sea Eagles)
3 points - Young Tonumaipea (Titans), Josh Papali'i (Raiders), Jake Clifford (Cowboys), Jared Waerea-Hargreaves (Roosters), Jesse Ramien (Sharks), Scott Drinkwater (Cowboys), Kotoni Staggs (Broncos), Josh Morris (Sharks), Jake Trbojevic (Sea Eagles), Viliame Kikau (Panthers), Jamayne Isaako (Broncos), Joseph Leilua (Wests Tigers), Cody Walker (Rabbitohs), Blayke Brailey (Sharks), Addin Fonua-Blake (Sea Eagles), Waqa Blake (Eels)
2 points - Cameron McInnes (Dragons), Adam Doueihi (Wests Tigers), Ronaldo Mulitalo (Sharks), Nathan Brown (Eels), Cameron Murray (Rabbitohs), James Fisher-Harris (Panthers), Jorge Taufua (Sea Eagles), Corey Norman (Dragons), Michael Jennings (Eels), Dale Finucane (Storm), Corey Thompson (Wests Tigers), Reagan Campbell-Gillard (Eels), Nick Cotric (Raiders), Michael Morgan (Cowboys), Anthony Milford (Broncos), Braden Hamlin-Uele (Sharks), Zac Lomax (Dragons), Lindsay Collins (Roosters), Damien Cook (Rabbitohs), Bradman Best (Knights), Emre Guler (Raiders), David Fifita (Broncos), Wayde Egan (Warriors)
1 point - Tohu Harris (Warriors), Elliott Whitehead (Raiders), Chad Townsend (Sharks), Ryan Papenhuyzen (Storm), Tom Opacic (Cowboys), Sam Lisone (Titans), Kyle Flanagan (Roosters), Junior Paulo (Eels), Wade Graham (Sharks), Tyrell Fuimaono (Dragons), Thomas Flegler (Broncos), Daniel Tupou (Roosters), Tui Kamikamica (Storm), Coen Hess (Cowboys), Alex Twal (Wests Tigers), Phillip Sami (Titans), Tevita Pangai Junior (Broncos), Ethan Lowe (Rabbitohs), Connor Watson (Knights), Valentine Holmes (Cowboys), Brian Kelly (Titans), Adam Elliott (Bulldogs), Payne Haas (Broncos), Peta Hiku (Warriors), Herman Ese'ese (Knights), Jaydn Su'A (Rabbitohs), Eliesa Katoa (Warriors), Reed Mahoney (Eels), Apisai Koroisau (Panthers), Josh Reynolds (Wests Tigers)

Sore points - injury update

Injury news that came out of Round 8

Edrick Lee (NEW) - arm - scans
Sione Mata'utia (NEW) - HIA - monitored
Kalyn Ponga (NEW) - HIA - monitored
Braidon Burns (SOU) - knee - season
Adam Elliott (CBY) - shoulder - scans
Matt Moylan (CRO) - hamstring - scans
Sam McIntyre (WST) - HIA - monitored
Luciano Leilua (WST) - head - scans
Brian To'o (PEN) - ankle - scans
Mitch Rein (GLD) - ankle - scans
Iosia Soliola (CAN) - face - 8-12 weeks
Emre Guler (CAN) - ankle - scans
Daniel Tupou (SYD) - ankle - 6 weeks
Boyd Cordner, Jared Waerea Hargreaves, Lindsay Collins (SYD) - HIA - monitored

The good news - who's back?

The following players are likely or possible to return from injury or suspension this weekend.

Broncos - Matt Lodge, Cory Paix, Kotoni Staggs, Jake Turpin, Jesse Arthars, David Fifita
Bulldogs - Jake Averillo
Sharks - Ronaldo Mulitalo
Storm - Tui Kamikamica, Brenko Lee
Knights - Tim Glasby, Connor Watson
Eels - Nathan Brown
Dragons - Jacob Host, Tariq Sims
Roosters - Issac Liu
Warriors - Kodi Nikorima, Lachlan Burr, Jazz Tevaga
Wests Tigers - Moses Mbye

Metrics Metrics Metrics

Each week we'll also do our best to keep you across the crowd figures and TV ratings which are often the most talked-about parts of the game.

With crowds back at some games, we'll report figures we receive - any matches where no crowd is recorded are listed as N.R.

Crowds: Round 8

Match Day / Time Venue Crowd
Storm v Roosters Thu 7:50pm
Suncorp Stadium
Raiders v Dragons Fri 6pm
GIO Stadium
Eels v Cowboys Fri 7:55pm
Bankwest Stadium
Titans v Sharks
Sat 3pm
Cbus Super Stadium
Warriors v Broncos Sat 5:30pm
Central Coast Stadium
Wests Tigers v Panthers Sat 7:35pm
Bankwest Stadium5107
Sea Eagles v Knights Sun 4:05pm
Bulldogs v Rabbitohs Sun 6:30pm
Bankwest Stadium3858

Ratings: Round 8

Match Day / Time Fox Nine Combined
Storm v Roosters Thu 7:50pm
M 377K
R 267K
Raiders v Dragons Fri 6pm
Eels v Cowboys Fri 7:55pm
M 298K
R 203K
Titans v Sharks
Sat 3pm
Warriors v Broncos Sat 5:30pm
Wests Tigers v Panthers Sat 7:35pm
Sea Eagles v Knights Sun 4:05pm
M 273K
Bulldogs v Rabbitohs Sun 6:30pm

One last thing...

With many teams returning to home grounds or changing venues over the coming week, we'll do our best to keep you up to date on who's playing where in the coming weeks. Check out the full NRL draw here.