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The Roar’s NRL expert tips and predictions: Round 10

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Expert
15th July, 2020
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Last weekend saw a major shake-up of The Roar’s NRL expert tipping leaderboard, but on paper, Round 10 promises a lot more certainty, with clear-cut favourites in just about all the games.

With 14 of the teams having at least two of five tipsters on them last weekend and only one unanimous decision across the eight games, there were always going to be varying scores to give the total scores a shake-up.

AJ managed to stamp his lead, getting six out of eight, with only the Warriors and Raiders letting him out. The Crowd similarly had six as the Warriors and Sea Eagles let them down. As I only had five out of eight, I’m now two points behind AJ, with The Crowd splitting us.

David had six out of eight as well, so he has closed the gap to both Mary (who also had five) and myself, while The Barry only had three and is now a distant last.

Full scores are in the table at the bottom of this article.

As mentioned, Round 10 brings us what should be more certainty, although in this COVID environment where we can’t even be sure what teams will be left in Sydney by the end of next week, nothing is certain.

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The round starts off with the grand final re-match at the SCG, with the high-flying Roosters taking on the injury-stricken Raiders, before Friday brings us the Storm against the Titans on the Sunshine Coast, and the Tigers against Brisbane.

Saturday sees a continuation of the spoon battle as the Dragons play Canterbury, before South Sydney look to grab another two points and some momentum with a tough game on the cards against Newcastle. Then the Tom Trbojevic-less Manly play Parramatta to close a big day of footy.

Sunday brings us the Warriors and Sharks on the Central Coast, and the closing act of Penrith against North Queensland.

Remember to get your tips into the form below by 6pm (AEST) on Thursday to join The Roar’s NRL tipping competition for 2020 and be featured as part of The Crowd’s tips for Round 10.

AJ Mithen

Tips: Raiders, Storm, Tigers, Dragons, Rabbitohs, Eels, Sharks, Panthers

Still in the lead, still untouchable. I’ve given you all enough chances to make something of yourselves, now it’s time for AJ to put this one away for 2020.

The first step to that is my beautiful Canberra Raiders putting 56 on the hapless Roosters, who will be slow, lethargic and ripe for the picking after having seven days recovery to Canberra’s five and not having to spend three hours in a bus on game day like the NRL has helpfully forced the Raiders to do. All these advantages for Canberra mean only one result and Roosters fans can be rightfully miffed at the shocking hand they’ve been dealt.

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Raiders

(Photo by Jason McCawley/Getty Images)

Storm will smack the Titans. That’s pretty much that.

I’m taking Wests Tigers on their defence, but they’ll be pretty wobbly against the Broncos, and the Dragons will do over the Doggies to be within a sniff of the top eight, if you can believe it.

Bunnies and Knights at first glance is a Knights rout, but they’re only split by one point in attack and 12 in defence. I’m taking Souths.

Eels will whomp on the Sea Eagles. That’s pretty much that.

I’ve got the Sharks to beat NZ as the Warriors farewell a quarter of their starting 13. Finally, Penrith will absolutely crush the Cowboys.

Mary Konstantopoulos

Tips: Raiders, Storm, Tigers, Dragons, Rabbitohs, Eels, Sharks, Panthers

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Only a fool would tip against the Sydney Roosters at the moment, despite several injuries. They continue to dominate almost every opposition team. But this is the Raiders’ revenge game and even without key players like Josh Hodgson, I’m tipping the Raiders for the upset.

Despite the Titans improvement in recent weeks, they won’t be able to overcome the Storm. Many have been predicting the Storm’s demise for several years, but even though they haven’t looked as sharp this year as previous years, the Titans will be no match for them, especially with Cameron Munster returning.

Many rejoiced following the Broncos’ win last week, but it was only the Bulldogs after all. They have a test this weekend against the Wests Tigers who have been extremely inconsistent this year. I’m tipping the Tigers to win, causing further chaos for the Broncos.

Harry Grant looks on

(Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)

The Dragons have had a couple of good weeks and Paul McGregor may have actually found his preferred spine. The Dragons will beat the Bulldogs, who are struggling at the moment, particularly with so much uncertainty about who will be the coach going forward.

The Rabbitohs and Knights should be an entertaining one. The Knights started the season strong but have struggled to score points in recent weeks. I’m tipping the Bunnies to win this game. Daniel Saifiti will be a big loss for the Knights, as will Latrell Mitchell for the Bunnies.

I’m tipping the Eels to beat the Sea Eagles but I’m not confident. The Eels struggled in attack last week without Mitchell Moses and were lucky to hold on against the Knights. The Sea Eagles are missing key players, especially Tom Trbojevic, but were below par against the Dragons last week. I don’t expect Manly to perform like that again and Daly Cherry-Evans will bounce back strongly after his shocker.

The Sharks should beat the Warriors but it won’t be easy. The Warriors welcome back Kodi Nikorima while the Sharks will be without Andrew Fifita.

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The Panthers should have no trouble disposing of the Cowboys, who won’t improve until they get a new coach.

David Holden

Tips: Roosters, Storm, Tigers, Dragons, Rabbitohs, Eels, Sharks, Panthers

It’s a messed up world we live in. Just when life was starting to return to near normal in NSW, there’s nothing like COVID-19 to smack you in the face. An outbreak at the Crossroads Hotel in western Sydney has the potential to spread into other parts of the city and force the return of restrictions. If all Sydney teams need to move, Brisbane might get Magic Round every weekend. Either that or we go full circle and move all 16 teams to Auckland where case numbers are low. Just hypothesising, but that would be one crazy outcome.

Anyway, that’s a major digress. I may not have put a dent in AJ’s lead last round but I’ve started my climb up the ladder. There are 11 rounds to go and just like the mighty Winx, I’m timing my run perfectly.

First up, the grand final rematch, with both sides having a mounting injury toll, but still putting quality sides out. Fancy that, Nick. Matt Ikuvalu couldn’t really be dropped after scoring five tries last week and replaces Ryan Hall, who on the contrary, can’t score a try. It’s got to the point now where Tedesco makes a break and immediately goes right, just to annoy the big Englishman. The Raiders improved last week and were unlucky to lose to the Storm. The loss of Hodgson though is huge and I can’t see them winning here.

Cameron Munster returns to face a Titans team who haven’t won back-to-back games in a long, long time. I know the Titans don’t have a bad record against the Storm when taking into account that they are really bad, but it won’t happen here. Storm by plenty.

Cameron Munster

(Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

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Michael Maguire doesn’t mind pulling out the big moves, not on the dance floor, but on the selection table. Josh Reynolds is out for being a bit of a grub and Maguire then figures he may as well sack the other starting half, Luke Brooks. Billy Walters get a start with Benji Marshall. It’s clear Maguire is tired of Kevvy Walters’ commentary bias towards the Broncos and wanted to throw a spanner in the works. The word is that a number of changes are likely for Brisbane and with David Fifita and Kotoni Staggs still out, the Tigers will get the chocolates.

Dragons fans are poking their heads out of the trenches this week, with a continuing return to form from their side. Keeping Ben Hunt out of the halves is working a treat. The Bulldogs have a new coach but even that won’t save the NRL’s version of the Titanic. Dragons to continue their rise.

There’s plenty of back line changes at the Rabbits with Latrell Mitchell suspended and Campbell Graham with a facial fracture. I’m not 100 per cent convinced on the Knights. They are playing safety-first football, which would be great if premierships were determined by completion rates, but they are not. I’ve got a feeling Souths may just get their first big scalp.

Here we go again, Manly and Parra. Eagles can’t win without Turbo, so home ground doesn’t matta, or matter if you like. I’ve never been a poet. The Eels have simply forgotten how to lose and they won’t this weekend.

Life’s no fun for a Sharks supporter. Last weekend, I settled in for a nice afternoon with the Panthers-supporting wife. Less than 40 minutes later, I had become a raving lunatic demanding the sacking of the whole Sharks team and coaching staff. I know there’s the salary cap penalty, but that was ridiculous. They will beat the Warriors on Sunday.

The biggest news on our last game is that Charlie Staines got too cosy with his family post-game and won’t get the chance to score his second bag of tries. The Cowboys are a basket case so the Panthers will win.

The Barry

Tips: Roosters, Storm, Broncos, Dragons, Knights, Eels, Sharks, Panthers

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Listening to my gut instincts didn’t work. Ignoring them hasn’t worked. I’m not sure what that leaves me with, but here goes…

I’d call this a grand final replay but the Raiders and Roosters are missing so many personnel from last year’s decider that it will only bear a passing resemblance. I think the Raiders are hit harder so going with the Roosters.

Brett Morris

(Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)

The Titans are showing signs of life but there’s no way they’re beating the Storm.

It’s amazing to think as bad as Brisbane has been going, they’re only two points outside eighth spot – currently held by the Tigers. Michael Maguire has made a double change in the halves with Marshall and Walters named to replace Reynolds and Brooks. I think the Broncs will edge them.

The Bulldogs only win this season has come against the Dragons… but that seems eons ago. In the meantime, the Dragons have gotten much better while the Dogs are further in the doldrums after the ruthless sacking of Dean Pay. Hate to say it, but Dragons.

The Rabbitohs and Knights are sitting in sixth and fifth respectively but both seem well off the standard of the top teams. Kalyn Ponga is getting battered at the moment but I think he’ll see the Knights home.

The last Manly versus Parra game was a beauty but while the Eels have kept rolling on, the Sea Eagles have been hit by injuries and suspensions. Eels to win by more than a touchie’s call this time.

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The Warriors haven’t been going too badly at ‘home’ this year, but with their coach sacked and four of their players heading home soon, I have to go with the Sharks.

The Panthers should account for the Cowboys pretty easily. I wouldn’t be surprised if they made it back-to-back 50s.

Scott Pryde

Tips: Roosters, Storm, Tigers, Dragons, Knights, Eels, Sharks, Panthers

Would you look at that. We will be halfway through the season after this week. Perfect timing for me to make another tipping run and for the Dragons to start going boom.

And they have the Dogs this week. Banana skin game for the Red V when they play Canterbury, every time without fail. They should get the win here though.

Ben Hunt (L) of the Dragons celebrates with Zac Lomax (R) after scoring a try

(Matt King/Getty Images)

Now, onto the rest. The Raiders have been hit hard by injury. I wrote on Sunday in my talking points that their season has gone up in smoke without Josh Hodgson, and that being the case, they certainly won’t be beating the Roosters, who are just playing unreal footy at the moment.

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The Titans have been better, if you could call it that, but that doesn’t mean they go close to competing with Melbourne on the other Queensland coast.

I almost tipped the Broncos to beat the Tigers, but I just can’t. So, they beat Canterbury last week. I mean, good they got a win, but it won’t be two. The Tigers are inconsistent, sure, but losing to Brisbane who seem to have no idea what their side will look like on Friday? No way.

I’m surprised by all the tips for Souths by the rest of the expert panel this week. They haven’t been all that impressive, while Newcastle have been for the most part. Knights in a canter here.

I’ll never tip Manly without Tom Trbojevic if they are playing a good side. Or most average ones. The Eels are a really good side, so they win here.

It’s hard not to feel sorry for the Warriors. They are about to fall apart with players heading home, and it’s hard to see them beating the Sharks, who will be seething after having the doors blown off against Penrith last weekend.

The final game, speaking of Penrith, doesn’t even need talking about. The Cowboys are bad. Really bad. Paul Green has to go if they are going to turn it around. Penrith by a cricket score.

Round 10 AJ Mary David The Barry Scott Crowd
SYD v CAN CAN CAN SYD SYD SYD SYD
MEL v GCT MEL MEL MEL MEL MEL MEL
WST v BRI WST WST WST BRI WST WST
STI v CBY STI STI STI STI STI STI
SOU v NEW SOU SOU SOU NEW NEW SOU
MAN v PAR PAR PAR PAR PAR PAR PAR
NZL v CRO CRO CRO CRO CRO CRO CRO
PEN v NQL PEN PEN PEN PEN PEN PEN
Last week 6 5 6 3 5 6
Total 49 45 44 41 47 48

Be sure to get your tips in on the form below by 6pm (AEST) this evening, and we will publish the results of The Crowd’s tips before the first game of the round kicks off.

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