In a season of so many firsts for the Vodafone Warriors, wing David Fusitu’a has achieved one of the most significant feats in the club’s history by becoming its first player to top the NRL’s regular season try-scoring charts.
As one of the competition’s most freakish finishers, the 24-year-old exploded out of the blocks with doubles in four of the first eight rounds of the season before a hat-trick against Manly boosted his tally to 15 tries in 13 appearances.
He endured a lean run in the next five games when he failed to score a try before finishing with a flourish by bagging seven tries in the last four rounds including another hat-trick against Penrith.
That gave the Mate Ma’a Tonga international 22 tries, a regular season record for the Vodafone Warriors and the club's first player to score 20 tries in the preliminary rounds ahead of the finals. Francis Meli still holds the overall record of 23 in 2003 (five tries in the finals) with Manu Vatuvei bagging 20 in 2010 (one try in the finals).
With his try against Canberra on Friday night, Fusitu’a was in pole position to create history with Cronulla’s Valentine Holmes the biggest threat to his lead on 20 going into the Sharks’ final match against the Bulldogs.
While he had opportunities, Holmes managed just one more try leaving Fusitu’a alone at the top of the charts.
2018 NRL | TOP TRY SCORERS
22 David Fusitu’a (Vodafone Warriors)
21 Valentine Holmes (Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks)
20 Robert Jennings (South Sydney Rabbitohs)
18 Corey Oates (Brisbane Broncos)
17 Josh Addo-Carr (Melbourne Storm)
VODAFONE WARRIORS | TOP TRY SCORERS IN REGULAR SEASON
22 David Fusitu’a 2018
19 Manu Vatuvei 2010 (20 including finals)
18 Francis Meli 2003 (23 including finals)
17 Manu Vatuvei 2014
17 Clinton Toopi 2002 (18 including finals)
16 Manu Vatuvei 2013