A lot of uncertainty may have filled Raiders fans when they signed the relatively unknown Josh Hodgson from Hull KR for the 2015 season, but by the end of the year they would remember the exploits of the dynamic number nine from the North of England.

Hodgson showed in his first season in the NRL that he has the potential to be the most influential hooker for the Raiders since the likes of Steve Walters or Simon Woolford, with a debut season which many had him pegged as one of the Raiders best for the season.

Playing all 24 matches in 2015 Hodgson established himself as the clubs number one hooker, working with Kurt Baptiste for the majority of the season at sharing the duties. Hodgson started in all 24 of these matches for the Raiders and showed despite his small stature he had a big motor when it came to both attack and defence.

His service from dummy half was a feature of his first season in green, as was his ability to pick the best time to run the ball and create maximum damage for the opposition defences. He also showcased his ability to back up the play in any circumstances and was often the first player pushing up with his team mates looking to secure an offload from one of his bigger men.

Averaging 33 tackles per game and a huge 12 try assists Hodgson will look to increase these numbers in 2016.

Memorable Moment

Heading into the final game of the season against Parramtta both the Raiders and Eels had little to play for other than their final positions on the bottom half of the NRL ladder. The Raiders went into the contest missing Blake Austin through a shoulder injury and Jack Wighton through suspension and after surrendering an early lead the Raiders looked headed for another close loss as they trailed 24-18 minutes in the dying moments of the season.

But a try to the enigmatic Edrick Lee on the stroke of full time and the calmness of Skipper Jarrod Croker to convert Lee’s effort from the sideline allowed the Raiders the chance to get the win, as they headed into Golden Point with the momentum swinging back in their favour.

An early attacking opportunity saw the Raiders in strong field position with the chance to kick the match winning field goal and Hodgson stepped into his role at dummy half looking to throw the final pass to give the best service for the attempt. Instead of throwing the pass though Hodgson caught the Eels defence napping, throwing a dummy to his right before dashing for the open try line on the left hand side of the ruck to seals the win and 10th position on the ladder for the Raiders.

Statistics:

Matches

Runs

Metres

Tackles

Tries

Try Assists

Tackle Breaks

Offloads

Line Breaks

24

162

1231

805

2

12

33

20

4