The Sydney Roosters will need to be at their physical best if they hope to outmuscle a Brisbane Broncos team coming off a tough victory over the Dragons. Join us for live scores and commentary from 7.30pm AEDT.
Brisbane produced one of their best defensive performances in years last week as they beat the Dragons 22-6 away from home.
The Broncos hardly had any possession throughout the contest but still managed to hold out a Dragons team that continues to struggle severely in attack.
Brisbane’s performance last week was as tough as they come, and they will be primed for a strong showing against Sydney tonight.
The Roosters have traditionally struggled against the Broncos, winning only one of their past eight home matches against them.
Trent Robinson’s men should ask a lot more questions of Brisbane’s defence tonight, especially if new recruits James Maloney, Michael Jennings and Sonny Bill Williams continue to build on last week’s solid performance against the Warriors.
A key reason behind Brisbane’s great record against the Roosters surrounds their ability to constantly out-muscle the Bondi Junction club.
Sydney has really struggled to get the better of the Broncos physical game upfront and need to aim up in the forwards if they are a chance of winning.
If the Roosters can do that, they will fancy their chances of outscoring the Broncos tonight.
Despite naming him in the line-up, Justin Hodges is a strong chance of missing tonight’s encounter with a hamstring injury
Hodges has been the key attacking spark for the Broncos in the opening two rounds and his presence will be sorely missed against the Roosters if he pulls out.
The Roosters meanwhile are just starting to get the best out of new recruits Jennings, Williams and Maloney, who were all very solid against New Zealand.
Jennings made two line breaks last week, one of which was possible thanks to a superb offload from Williams in the second half.
Maloney meanwhile set-up a try for Shaun Kenny-Dowall in the 16-14 victory over the Warriors and is forging a strong combination with Mitchell Pearce in the halves.
Broncos halves Peter Wallace and Scott Prince however have also improved since the round one loss to Manly, and will dictate terms if Brisbane’s forwards manage to outmuscle the Rooster’s big men.
With both teams coming off morale boosting wins, tonight’s contest should be a close encounter between two sides with strong finals aspirations.
If the Roosters can just manage to win the arm wrestle in the forwards, they have the skill in the halves and backline to win at home.
Roosters by 4.