Hodgson Impresses Graham

James Graham has stamped his authority as one of the best Englishman to lace a boot in the NRL and this week the latest Englishman to prove his worth will run out at Belmore.

The Raiders number nine Josh Hodgson has started the season is brilliant form and sits on top of the Dally M Player of the Year leader board with 10 votes from a possible 12 in the first four rounds of the NRL season.

The crafty number nine has been superb for the Raiders and with that comes plenty of praise, including Bulldogs skipper James Graham.

“He has proven himself to be a quality rugby league player,” said Graham.

“He had a pretty good year last year and it seems like Ricky Stuart has certainly got the best out of him.

“I’m pleased for him to be playing well. He has worked really hard on his game and I know when he came over here, he was really excited about the opportunity to come over here and play.

“He has knuckled down, worked hard and he is one of the leading nines in the competition.”

On the back of another brilliant performance in the Raiders’ loss to Gold Coast on Saturday, where Hodgson set up two tries with clever dummy half play, he said it was nice to hear positive things about his game, personally he is happy where he is at, but knows the team can get better.

“Personally it’s a good start, but I think as a team we can certainly be a bit more consistent,” said Hodgson.

“We’ve got five points out of a possible eight, but we’re always striving for perfection and we want to improve where we can.”

Those who were on the hill at Belmore and witnessed the Bulldogs' blistering opening against the Storm on a Monday night in Round 16 can't help but crack a smile any time that particular game gets a mention.

They were given a follow-up dose against the Sharks four weeks later but for those who didn't get back to Belmore in 2015, there are two further chances this season.

Occasions such as this are special because they are rare and after going 17 years without a game at Belmore it's an opportunity all footy fans should take up.

NRL: Bulldogs v Raiders, Monday April 4, Belmore Sports Ground, 7pm