The race that officially welcomed Grant t

The race that officially welcomed Grant to Wests Tigers
Author
Dan Talintyre
Timestamp
Thu 7 May 2020, 05:52 PM

Josh Aloiai says it himself: “You’re not really a part of Wests Tigers until there’s a 10-metre dash and an Instagram shout-out.”

New recruit Harry Grant can now officially call himself part of the club.

Run by the Samoan international himself, the unofficial test of joining Wests Tigers has been in operation since the start of the 2019 pre-season when Aloiai took on arguably the fastest player in the club in Jacob Liddle over ten metres… and won.

We know what you’re thinking. We have pictures to prove it.

Since then, the 108-kilogram forward has gone self-claimed undefeated over the distance — taking out a number of high-profile teammates along the way in David Nofoaluma and Corey Thompson as well as former teammate Esan Marsters.

New recruit Billy Walters also came up short — leading to Aloiai’s next target in rising star hooker Harry Grant after training on Thursday.

The 24-year-old Aloiai helped set the scene of today’s event.

“I go after the fast backs because they underestimate us hard-working forwards,” Aloiai said in a serious tone that didn’t quite encapsulate the jovial question.

“No-one has got me yet.”

"When Harry got to the club, I started to hear that he was asking around as to the fastest was over a short distance. I was nominated by my peers and I could just tell that Harry was lurking around at training looking for a race.

"I told him if he wanted it he could come and get it.

“The challenge was for a week of coffees in the morning, and an Instagram post. Once he heard that I think he became a bit reluctant and he heard my resume and became a bit intimidated, but the boys starting to get him fired up for it.”

After a bit of back-and-forth, Thursday would eventually set the gauntlet thrown down by Grant in a brazen attempt to stake his claim at the club.

“To be fair, he smoked me in the conditioning today and thought I’d be a bit tired so he called me on it,” Aloiai reflected.

"But I had a little bit extra in the bank… a little side account.

“Our Head of Physical Performance Andrew Gray was on the camera so there could be no disputing it. Assistant Coach Andrew Webster was also there, and there’s no doubt that. Ask whoever you want — it was a win fair and square.”

Quiet up until this point in the story, Grant chimed in with a different version of events that could cause some controversy but ultimately accepted his fate.

“There were definitely some suggestions of a false start,” the rake admitted.

"And they didn’t come from someone who wanted me to win — they came from Chris Lawrence who we all know is one of the most honest blokes you’ll ever meet.

"But I guess it’s good for Josh.

“He’s been my conditioning partner in the past couple weeks so I had to give the guy one win just to help him feel okay.”

All the action as training returns!All the action as training returns!
All the action as training returns!All the action as training returns!
While certainly far from humble in his ten-metre victory, Aloiai did return the credit for Grant in his conditioning — commenting on the way the hooker has adjusted to the club since making the mid-season switch from Melbourne.

“I’ll be honest — being his isolation partner for conditioning was depressing,” Aloiai said. "The bloke is a freak. I felt like I was running by himself he’s that fit.

"He’s scary fit; we’re worlds apart in conditioning. I’ve got him over ten metres but after that… well, I’m 110 kg’s and that kind of takes way.

“But in all seriousness, he’s a great guy and he’s going to be awesome for us. We’ve got a pretty welcoming group who takes things pretty lightly and he’s settled in really well. The way we welcome people is through banter and these dashes, and this was his official warm welcoming to Wests Tigers today.”

So it’s official — welcome Harry Grant!

That’s a cool story.

Not many pics of Momo over on the storm side of things

I’m excited to see Harry play for us and truly believe we will be a better side with a stronger spine.
Brooks , Mbye being back and Douehi having more time to learn our system should be good for us.
Need to get out of the blocks quick after the disappointment of our last game. Only 3 weeks to go 🤞

last edited by Sully

What about combinations??

@tiger_one said in The race that officially welcomed Grant t:

What about combinations??

I love the insight from this article. Looks like Aloiai is great for the team… I agree about the issue with combinations though, given all the new signings. We might need to be patient given the lack of playing time together. Last week I read a cool article by the NRL Economist which talked about the importance of combinations. He created a “team purity” metric which looks at the number of games a teams players have played together. He argues that teams like the Storm consistently perform because the majority of the experienced squad members have played together consistently. The opposite was the Dragons who despite having one of the most experienced rosters perform poorly because they bring in experience from outside resulting in key players having different ingrained views on what it takes to perform. Below is the rank order of teams based on purity. It’s a pretty spot on correlation with last years’ ladder with only a few outliers (panthers and cowboys underperformed, eels and sharks performed better than the stat suggested they should). For the Tigers… well it looks like another 9th places finish for us.

‘PURITY SCORE’: EVERY NRL CLUB RANKED

  1. Melbourne Storm

Total Club Appearances: 1697 | Total NRL Appearances: 1973 | Team Purity Score: 86.0%

  1. Canberra Raiders

Total Club Appearances: 1509 | Total NRL Appearances: 1830 | Team Purity Score: 82.5%

  1. Brisbane Broncos

Total Club Appearances: 1508 | Total NRL Appearances: 1859 | Team Purity Score: 81.1%

  1. Sydney Roosters

Total Club Appearances: 1763 | Total NRL Appearances: 2228 | Team Purity Score: 79.1%

  1. Manly Warringah Sea Eagles

Total Club Appearances: 1352 | Total NRL Appearances: 1903 | Team Purity Score: 71.0%

  1. North Queensland Cowboys

Total Club Appearances: 1380 | Total NRL Appearances: 2049 | Team Purity Score: 67.3%

  1. Penrith Panthers

Total Club Appearances: 932 | Total NRL Appearances: 1409 | Team Purity Score: 66.1%

  1. South Sydney Rabbitohs

Total Club Appearances: 1104 | Total NRL Appearances: 1742 | Team Purity Score: 63.4%

  1. Wests Tigers

Total Club Appearances: 1407 | Total NRL Appearances: 2383 | Team Purity Score: 59.0%

  1. Cronulla Sutherland Sharks

Total Club Appearances: 974 | Total NRL Appearances: 1757 | Team Purity Score: 55.4%

  1. Canterbury Bankstown Bulldogs

Total Club Appearances: 1013 | Total NRL Appearances: 1865 | Team Purity Score: 54.3%

  1. Parramatta Eels

Total Club Appearances: 1052 | Total NRL Appearances: 2115 | Team Purity Score: 49.7%

  1. Gold Coast Titans

Total Club Appearances: 988 | Total NRL Appearances: 2036 | Team Purity Score: 48.5%

  1. St George Illawarra Dragons

Total Club Appearances: 1167 | Total NRL Appearances: 2484 | Team Purity Score: 47.0%

  1. New Zealand Warriors

Total Club Appearances: 903 | Total NRL Appearances: 2174 | Team Purity Score: 41.5%

  1. Newcastle Knights

Total Club Appearances: 764 | Total NRL Appearances: 1861 | Team Purity Score: 41.1%

last edited by nrlsurvivor

9th? Noooooooooooooooooooooooooooo

Aloiai is one of the best blokes in the game. Really happy he’s at tigers and he’s evolving into a quality prop as well

@JoshColeman99 said in The race that officially welcomed Grant t:

Aloiai is one of the best blokes in the game.

Been one of my favourite Tigers for a long time

I’m so pumped to have Grant. Got a good feeling that Smith will play on, depending on how the Storm finish the season and that we can lock this kid up long term. That said, if the Storm win the premiership I think Smith will retire on that note. Smith to play well all year but Storm to get knocked out in the finals is my hope.

b72a128e-97e5-4f67-9f40-0cd493a4fbea-image.png

im preety sure this is momo

only pic i could find ofhim on storms website

he looked like he has bulked a bit

Can someone please post the Tele article comparing Smith to Grant.

@Littlebittipsy said in The race that officially welcomed Grant t:

Can someone please post the Tele article comparing Smith to Grant.

I think they did mate, in the Preseason 2020 thread

Roger that JT TIger, cheers.

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