Former Australian five-eigth Matthew Johns has likened Canberra Raiders recruit John Bateman to some of the best Englishman to come across to the National Rugby League.
Bateman has been outstanding since his NRL debut in round one and sits on 11 Arthur Beetson Medal votes – just one behind leader Cameron Munster.
“Englishman John Bateman is following a long tradition of Yorkshireman [sic] who have turned heads in the NRL,” Johns wrote in The Daily Telegraph on Friday.
“At the Raiders, Bateman has brought with him something different.
“Not big, not lightning quick or gloriously skillful, the Bradford native is an old-fashioned English footballer.
“Whatever the job requires, he’ll do it. Bateman can be selected on an edge or in the middle. It doesn’t matter because he roams.
“Like the old-fashioned locks, he has great instincts and as a result tends to turn up where he needs to be.”
Bateman’s 3rd placed Raiders face Manly on Sunday at Canberra Stadium.