O'Neill. Looks like a lost babe in the woods when given space. His lack of speed or power is a major weakness on the wing in contrast to so many other teams, particularly Parra.
Two times plays just died with the ball in his hands.
Watching O'Neill struggle his way up the field on that bomb return/disallowed try was tough to watch. Next him was Hamiso barely raising a sweat and cruising in second gear.
You could hear Hamiso thinking, 'just send it this way old man'.
That is a great report to hear. For a young bloke to have the confidence to talk like that at the back is very good signs.
Another quality he seems to have is time and awareness. He is an eyes up footballer and is making very quick and good decisions.
It is remarkable, this works every damn time.
Exceptional performance, hard to add to all the words already said by fans and Paul Green's comments at the press conference.
However, as a well known critic of Maclean's, I thought it appropriate to add that it was finally great to see him hitting...
Except it wasn't.
There was a suggestion that he is somehow below the likes of Oates and Gagai. That is an entirely subjective and easily contestable position to take.
I'd say the rest of your nicely worded post outlines some reasons why.