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Kikau, Ponga setting the pace in Dally M race

The Storm were able to conjure a great escape against the Bulldogs at AAMI Park but one thing they couldn't do was put the clamps on a rampaging Viliame Kikau.

The imposing left edge back-rower has been in slashing form for the Bulldogs, racking up six Dally M votes in Round 6 to go with four the previous week in the win over the Roosters.

Kikau is averaging 110 run metres per game this season and has been particularly destructive during the past fortnight, breaking 10 tackles and causing havoc for the right edge defence of the Storm and Roosters.

On the back of that fabulous fortnight Kikau has jumped to the equal kead in Dally M voting on 17 points, alongside Knights fullback Kalyn Ponga, who is looking to become the first player since Johnathan Thurston in 2014-15 to claim back-to-back medals.

NRL Best Moments - Round 6

Ponga picked up the maximum points available on a wet night in Newcastle in Round 5 but was overshadowed by Joey Manu and Angus Crichton in Round 6 as the Roosters sprung an upset at McDonald Jones Stadium.

Manly supremo Daly Cherry-Evans sits third in the standings after a sublime performance in the thrilling draw against the Warriors while 2022 Dally M winner Nicho Hynes is fourth on 14 points after grabbing two points against the Rabbitohs.

In form Dragon Zac Lomax and Broncos powerhouse Pat Carrigahn polled six votes in their respective Round 6 matches to sit equal on 13 points.

Joseph Manu the metre eater

Should Kikau go on to win the Dally M he would be the first back-rower to take the game's most coveted individual prize since Jason Taumalolo tied with Cooper Cronk in 2016.

The Dally M votes will go behind closed doors after Round 12 and the winner will be crowned at a glittering ceremony in NRL grand final week.

Dally M Standings after Round 6

17 points
Kalyn Ponga (Knights)
Viliame Kikau (Bulldogs)

15 points
Daly Cherry-Evans (Sea Eagles)

14 points
Nicho Hynes (Sharks)

13 points
Pat Carrigan (Broncos)
Zac Lomax (Dragons)

12 points
Dylan Edwards (Panthers)
Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow (Dolphins)
Scott Drinkwater (Cowboys)
Tom Trbojevic (Sea Eagles)

11 points
James Tedesco (Roosters)

10 points
Isaiya Katoa (Dolphins)
Ryan Papenhuyzen (Storm)
Jamal Fogarty (Raiders)
Shaun Johnson (Warriors)

Acknowledgement of Country

Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs respect and honour the Darug and Eora nations, who are the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.