After some successful weeks in the tipping department, we’re back again for round seven of the National rugby league. This week I am hoping to pick some big winners and some even bigger upsets.
St George Illawarra Dragons v Newcastle Knights (Submitted before last night’s game)
Wayne Bennett’s legacy versus the actual Wayne Bennett – what a great match-up this is! The Dragons were outclassed by the Sharks last week and will be looking to bounce back against a Newcastle side that despite getting the win, really weren’t that great against the Eels. And without Kurt Gidley, St. George will be too good at home for the Novacastrians.
St. George by 8.
Brisbane Broncos v Canberra Raiders (Submitted before last night’s game)
Brisbane sit second on the competition ladder, and have shown that they still are a definite danger without Darren Lockyer. Canberra are still crippled by injuries up front and despite watching them carve up the Warriors, playing in Brisbane is far different from in Canberra. The hosts will do enough to get home. Just.
Brisbane by 2.
Melbourne Storm v Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs
Melbourne have to lose eventually and many are tipping that it will be against the Bulldogs here. However, in Melbourne, the Storm will kick it up another gear and this is a ‘Dogs side that’s more temperamental than my tipping form. So with that in mind, expect Melbourne to make it seven in a row.
Melbourne by 8.
Manly Sea Eagles v Gold Coast Titans
After their mini form slump, Manly bounced back on Monday night at Brookvale, and they line-up their again against the the Gold Coast Titans. Manly will look to expose the Titans through the middle and shut down their already depleted attack with their smothering defence. Low-scoring – perhaps even another scoreless night – for the visitors will see the Sea Eagles come away with the win.
Manly by 18.
Sydney Roosters v North Queensland Cowboys
I genuinely thought the Cowgirls stood a chance against Melbourne, but after rolling over the in the second half, I was left proven completely and utterly wrong. The Roosters are looking for their third win in a row, and at home, with the promising mid-week contract signings they’ve had, will turn in a good one as the Origin debate heats up some more.
Roosters by 10.
New Zealand Warriors v South Sydney Warriors
After heading across the ditch and being belted twice, the Warriors will be grateful to be playing at home – though they do come up against a pesky Souths side. Expect the Warriors to be more disciplined though, and attack straight through the middle of the Souths defence, where they simply have had too many injuries already this season. Souths have already been on the wrong end of a thriller against the Roosters this year; it could be on the cards again in this one.
Warriors by 2.
Cronulla Sharks v Parramatta Eels
Cronulla have been one of the sides of the year already and to put it bluntly, Parramatta have not. They were simply woeful against Newcastle, and should really have won the game. Cronulla won’t afford the Eels the opportunities they had against Newcastle, as Parramatta consolidate themselves at the bottom of the ladder.
Cronulla by 13.
Penrith Panthers v Wests Tigers
There’s something brewing in the air in Penrith on a Monday night. They’ve been a team to avoid for me this year, but are due for a win soon and at home to a struggling Tigers side, they could pull out the win here. Having said that, the Panthers back-line is crippled with injury and the likes of Chris Lawrence and Blake Ayshford are due to explode soon. A make-it or break-it game for both sides, where either team could win big.
The Tigers are due to string it together sooner or later and come back at the criticism they’ve received with vengeance. I say it comes Monday night against Penrith.
Tigers by 16.