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The Roar’s NRL expert tips and predictions: Round 13

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5th August, 2020
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Sometimes in sport, the favourites are the favourites for a reason, as we found out last weekend. Will that prove true again in Round 13? Here to talk you through the next week of footy are The Roar’s NRL expert tipping panel.

Back in Round 7 and 8, you may remember I went on a bit of a run, tipping the Cowboys to beat the Knights, the Titans to beat the Broncos, the Sharks to defeat Manly, and the Warriors to defeat Brisbane.

It brought me back to within a point of leader AJ, but trying something similar last week has backfired, with none of the Dragons, Sea Eagles or Knights winning.

It means I tipped a measly four from eight, and with everyone else either getting six or seven, Mary has overtaken me for third place. AJ continues to lead The Crowd by a point, with four between Mary and The Crowd.

David is now within a point of overtaking me, while The Barry is another two back on the bottom of the table.

Round 13 brings us another handful of games with tempting outsiders. The Dragons play an understrength Roosters, the inconsistent Warriors travel to Brookvale, Anthony Seibold and Wayne Bennett clash at Homebush, Canberra travel to Penrith who have won seven straight, and the Sharks host the Eels.

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That doesn’t even make mention of the fact the Tigers head to Newcastle, while the Titans will take on the Cowboys at home.

The only game you could definitively say the opposition are big outsiders is when Melbourne take on a struggling Canterbury outfit in the early Saturday game on the Sunshine Coast.

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 13.

AJ Mithen

Tips: Roosters, Sea Eagles, Rabbitohs, Storm, Knights, Raiders, Titans, Eels

Still ahead, still untouchable. Pryde is finished after shooting for the moon and reaching the swamp, Holden and Barry were never in it, but I will give Konstantopoulos some regard because she’s been sneaky effective the last month or so. As for ‘The Crowd’, they tend to copy me, so here are your tips for this week, you bunch of plagiarists!

The Roosters will tick a win for Mitch Aubusson’s 300th and Tedesco’s 150th. I don’t mind the Dragons, but would you tip them to beat the Roosters? Maybe Pryde would.

I’ve tipped Manly solely because I refuse to ever, ever tip the Warriors.

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Uncle Wayne will belt up his usurper’s rabble on Friday. Should be prime comedy viewing and the Storm will defeat the Bulldogs.

The Knights should defeat the Tigers if they’re half serious about achieving anything in 2020. They do have injuries, but the Tigers are eminently gettable.

The mighty Canberra Raiders will rise above yet another away trip to put 56 on the hapless Penrith, the paper champions in July. The Panthers may have beaten the Roosters, Storm and run the Eels close, but now they get to play a real club. Watch them crumble.

I choose the Titans because why not. And I choose the Eels because it’s early in the week and I haven’t seen who Cronulla are bringing back into the team yet.

Josh Papalii leads out the Raiders

Josh Papalii and the Raiders. (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)

Mary Konstantopoulos

Tips: Roosters, Sea Eagles, Rabbitohs, Storm, Knights, Raiders, Titans, Eels

The Dragons are a deeply frustrating team at the moment and have had the chance to win their last two games, but for poor ball-handling skills and silly errors. The Roosters are down on troops and have looked vulnerable, but they still have the class to win.

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The Sea Eagles should beat the Warriors, but the challenge with the latter this year is not knowing which team is going to show up. Despite being down on players and overseas, the Kiwis have shown resilience in the last couple of weeks. But the loss of Blake Green is significant, as he is the steady and mature half. His presence will be missed for the rest of the season.

The Bennett vs Seibold clash should be a spicy one, which I see Souths winning convincingly. The same for the next game. No doubt the Bulldogs will show some ticker, work hard in defence and be brave, but I don’t see them beating the Storm who are amongst the comp front runners.

I was close to tipping the Tigers this week, but they are inconsistent and Harry Grant is out. Grant has caused big problems for teams with his speedy service and the away side’s attack will be poorer without him.

The next game is match of the round and I’m tipping the upset. The Raiders had a close call against the Cowboys last week but are getting their troops back. I expect Canberra to aim up and we know what they can do – their game against the Roosters showed it. As for Penrith, they are red hot at the moment, but how long will it last?

I’m tipping the Titans in a close one against the Cowboys and for the Eels to turn around two recent lacklustre performances and beat the Sharks, who are depending on a lot of reserve graders at the moment to cover injuries.

David Holden

Tips: Roosters, Sea Eagles, Rabbitohs, Storm, Knights, Panthers, Cowboys, Eels

I’m not great company when my team loses. I scream at the referee, yell at my players, would kick the cat if I had one. Just generally not nice. It’s why I subdue the pain of defeat by picking the opposition in matches – A kind of NRL yin and yang, if you like.

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It happened last weekend but in reverse. The great feeling of the Sharks winning was quickly overtaken by the fact that I was the only expert tipper to pick the Broncos, therefore a net negative.

With only eight rounds left, AJ may have flown the coop. Only a Raiders collapse over the last two months of the competition can halt him now. I’m sticking voodoo pins in Ricky Stuart. Even if AJ is almost over the line, there is a podium finish and a request to do this again next year up for grabs.

The pressure is again mounting on Paul McGregor after the Dragons revival has smacked into a wall. The Roosters are undermanned and way below their best but should scratch out a win.

The expected ambush at Lottoland last weekend turned into a bit of an anti-climax with the Eagles forgetting that, to cause an ambush, you’ve actually got to play pretty well. Des Hasler would have had them walking over the metaphorical broken glass this week. The Warriors looked good last weekend but, seriously, how many hits can this side take? Todd Payten gets a win and then knocks back the opportunity to be head coach next year. Sea Eagles to win.

Just when Anthony Seibold believes things can’t get any worse, his team gets to match off against Wayne Bennett’s Rabbitohs. The Broncos played well for 70 minutes against the Sharks, an improvement on the 40 against the Storm. However, the last ten showed this team has forgotten how to win. I’m not sure the inclusion of David Fifita changes that. Souths fans wish Indigenous round was every week, as it brings out the best in Cody Walker. Alas, it’s over for this year but the Bunnies should win.

The Bulldogs are lifting their form, perhaps due to Trent Barrett looking at who he should be holding onto next year. No Cameron Smith for the Storm, but Brandon will fill in well. Playing in front of a smaller crowd at Sunshine Coast Stadium (whoever thought that half capacity equated to full), Melbourne will win.

The Knights and Tigers are both on a slide. Harry Grant is a big out for the away side. It was interesting to see that Michael Maguire’s dummy spit at halftime last week had little effect. Is he losing the dressing room? Newcastle to win.

The Raiders have made a habit over the last few weeks of playing ugly but getting up. It won’t be enough at Panthers Stadium though. On current form, Penrith win the comp. Of course, you don’t win the comp in August, even in a COVID-impacted year, but you get my drift – the home team win.

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We’ve got a clash of the Queensland juggernauts on Sunday, with the Titans up against the Cowboys. Michael Morgan is a big inclusion for North Queensland and the side should be pumped to play on a field which doesn’t resemble a cow paddock. With Morgan back calling the shots and Jason Taumalolo piling on the metres gained week on week, they will have enough.

Like the Roosters and Knights, the Eels are going through a flat spot at the moment. The Sharks are not, having won six of the last seven. Unfortunately, that loss was against a top-four side. As a Sharks supporter, I’m loving the attack that Cronulla are displaying this year. Unfortunately, the defence has spiralled the other way and defence is what wins these matches. I’m tipping Parra. No yin yang here, they are just the better side.

Moeaki Fotuaika

Moeaki Fotuaika. (Photo by Ian Hitchcock/Getty Images)

The Barry

Tips: Roosters, Sea Eagles, Rabbitohs, Storm, Knights, Panthers, Titans, Eels

I’d love to know exactly how the Roosters are travelling. Since trouncing the Cowboys in Round 9, they lost a tight game against the Raiders and did just enough to win against the lowly Warriors and Titans. Are they closer to a semi-final surge or an embarrassing defeat?

You know the Sea Eagles must be struggling when The Roar’s Manly uber-fan Forty Twenty feels compelled to ask if they are just making up the numbers. I know the fans have been, but it’s starting to look like the players are waiting for Tom Trbojevic. The Warriors have been tough but Manly should edge them at home.

In a story that didn’t get much airtime during the week, Wayne Bennett sent a detailed submission to Peter V’landys requesting that indigenous round be extended to a month with a view to playing it into semi-finals.

With a better for and against than the teams immediately above them, the Dogs could go shooting up the ladder with their next win. We’ve been close lately and there’s never a better time to take on the Storm than sans Cam Smith. Even so, Canterbury will have to wait at least another week.

The Knights could start to lose touch with the top four with a loss, while the Tigers could drift further from ninth. Knights.

The Panthers are going great guns at the top of the table but looking at the draw, it’s been a while since they’ve faced a top team in good form. The Raiders will be a great test for them. Really tough one to pick, but I’ll lean to the Panthers.

Lot of eyes on the returns of AJ Brimson and Michael Morgan. Big ask for Brimson to slot straight back into the one jersey after a long layoff. I’m tipping the Titans to upset the Cowboys.

Another cracker to close out the round. The Shaun Johnson-led Sharks attack has been on fire for the past five or six weeks. However, since the resumption Cronulla have only played one game against the current top-eight, a 56-24 loss to the Panthers. The Eels should be their acid test.

Scott Pryde

Tips: Dragons, Sea Eagles, Rabbitohs, Storm, Knights, Panthers, Titans, Sharks

Alright, alright. I know you’re all looking at the Dragons above and wondering if it’s a typo.

It’s not. The Roosters have been below their best, and are battling injuries. Even more injuries after Jared Waerea-Hargreaves and Josh Morris failed to prove their fitness, while Kyle Flanagan was bafflingly dropped. The Red V have been playing better, and with the Anzac Cup on the line, they might just string 80 minutes together.

Watch for Matt Dufty to have a blinder, Tristan Sailor to show his class and, as long as the forwards can match it, St George Illawarra to win a tight one.

Elsewhere, the Sea Eagles should beat the Warriors. I’m never confident tipping Manly without Tom Trbojevic, but the Warriors had their win last week. It’ll be tough from here on out.

Like the Warriors, I won’t tip Brisbane. They are simply horrendous, and last week’s late capitulation proves it. David Fifita is back, but they will lose.

Melbourne will beat the Bulldogs because… Do I need to explain this one? The other two Saturday games are much tougher, but I’ll take the Knights to beat the Tigers, although who knows what the merged club are going to throw up (not as much without Harry Grant). The Panthers are due for a loss, but I can’t see the Raiders handing it to them.

The Cowboys don’t look like winning at home, let alone away, so I’ll take an improving Titans side, while the exciting Sharks should upset the Eels who are in a mid-season slump. Parra will turn it around at some point as they charge to the finals, but not this week.

Round 12 AJ Mary David The Barry Scott Crowd
STI v SYD SYD SYD SYD SYD STI SYD
MAN v NZL MAN MAN MAN MAN MAN MAN
SOU v BRI SOU SOU SOU SOU SOU SOU
MEL v CBY MEL MEL MEL MEL MEL MEL
NEW v WST NEW NEW NEW NEW NEW NEW
PEN v CAN CAN CAN PEN PEN PEN PEN
GCT v NQL GCT GCT NQL GCT GCT GCT
CRO v PAR PAR PAR PAR PAR CRO PAR
Last week 7 6 6 7 4 7
Total 68 63 61 59 62 67

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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