In a field of monsters, the one that stands out the most must be absolutely gargantuan. That monster is “Dogzilla” Sam Kasiano.
After tearing apart opposition sides in 2012 on his way to a Grand Final and New Zealand representative honours, injuries throughout 2013 slowed his progress somewhat.
Still making an impact for the Kiwi’s in the Rugby League World Cup, Kasiano wasn’t exactly playing the consistent footy he became famous for. In 2014, big Sam managed 14 games, averaging 9.8 runs per game for an average of 88.9 metres.
A massive improvement on 2013, Kasiano was starting to get back to his absolute destructive best until he re-injured himself and missed the Dogs finals campaign.
“Sam had an unfortunate injury last year. At the time he was playing really good footy. Sam just wants to play. When he is playing he’s a handful. So we’ll be relying on him for those parts of the game,” said coach Des Hasler.
At only 24, Kasiano has the ability to carry 4 defenders on his back and still get an offload away, which is crucial for the Bulldogs if they are to create second phase football in attacking opportunities.
“He’s a talented athlete. He’s very skillful. His size is right up there with the best in the game when he’s playing well. So that’s what he needs to do, he needs to get that confidence back that he had last year.
“He needs to get back playing consistent footy and when he is there’s not too many people who can stop him,” said fellow prop Aiden Tolman.
Many say the “Dogzilla” has slimmed down a little from his frame of the past few seasons but Dogs coach Des Hasler didn’t shed too much light on that opinion, saying about his offseason, “he’s been steady. He’s just a big human.”