Cronulla prop Andrew Fifita is on track to win back his NSW State of Origin jumper after almost single-handedly putting away a stubborn Gold Coast.
The former Blues representative scored a crucial try in a stellar second half display against the Titans on Sunday in which he totalled a remarkable 116 run metres for the 40 minutes.
Fifita finished the match with a game-high 182 metres and six tackle busts along with 24 tackles and two offloads.
He’s now topped 140 run metres in five of the club’s opening six games of the season.
They are the sorts of numbers that could well earn him another shot at Queensland.
“If he keeps performing like he is, yeah,” Blues and Sharks captain Paul Gallen said.
“Obviously he’s just got to put consistent performances together. Big body like that, playing the way he is, when he just runs hard, when he runs straight, you see how effective he is.”
Fifita wasn’t the only one to make an impression in round six, with Roosters prop Dylan Napa turning plenty of heads – and South Sydney bodies – with easily his career best performance.
While a pre-season incident means he won’t be considered for Queensland this year, Napa produced his first ever 80-minute NRL effort, ran 141 metres, made a whopping 51 tackles, scored a try and twice knocked Rabbitohs talisman Sam Burgess off his feet with bone-jarring hits.
The 17-10 win was the Roosters’ first of the season.
The Tricolours weren’t the only ones to break their duck over the weekend either, with Newcastle also registering their first victory of 2016, an 18-16 thriller over Wests Tigers.
In the round-opener, St George Illawarra’s scoring drought extended to a worrying 164 minutes with a 26-0 whitewash in Brisbane, while Parramatta’s big-name signings Michael Jennings and Kieran Foran showed why the Eels forked out the big bucks for them, with dominant outings in a 36-6 thrashing of Canberra.
Manly continued their mini-resurgence by inflicting more pain on the struggling Warriors with a 34-18 win across the ditch on Saturday, as did North Queensland on Penrith at the foot of the mountains, with yet another heartbreaking loss (23-18) for the luckless Panthers.
Melbourne and Canterbury finish the round in at AAMI Park on Monday night.