Anyone can contribute to The Roar and have their work featured alongside some of Australia’s most prominent sports journalists.
|5:40 PM||Quarter-final 1 Eels vs Knights||14-7|
|6:05 PM||Quarter-final 2 Panthers vs Dragons||14-17|
|6:30 PM||Quarter-final 3Titans vs Sea Eagles||24-0|
|6:55 PM||Quarter-final 4 Cowboys vs Rabbitohs||20-6|
|7:20 PM||Broncos vs Warriors NRLW||25-4|
|7:45 PM||Dragons vs Roosters NRLW||13-14|
|8:20 PM||Semi-final 1- Dragons vs Eels||8-6|
|8:45 PM||Semi-final 2 - Titans vs Cowboys||8-19|
|9:25 PM||Women’s final - Broncos vs Dragons||4-28|
|10:00 PM||Final Cowboys vs Dragons||23-14|
The rugby league season is finally on its way with the NRL Nines reaching its crescendo tonight at HBF Park in Perth. Yes, it’s the finals with the NRL and the NRLW about to crown a winner. Join The Roar for live scores and a blog of the match, starting from 5:40pm (AEDT).
February is an optimistic time for NRL supporters. Before the season, everyone can be bright about their team’s chances of going all the way to the big dance. It’s only later on when most of us turn our attention to next year.
The NRL Nines can tell us much or tell us little about the season, depending on whether your team wins. Supporters of the winning club will see this a sure sign of things to come. Everyone else will see it as nothing at all reflective of the larger version starting in a few weeks.
The truth, of course, is probably somewhere in between and if we treat the Nines as a bit of entertainment over the weekend, we are probably on the right track.
One attraction of this weekend is that both the NRL and NRLW teams will feature. We’ll start with the quarter-finals tonight and finish up with the grand finals back to back.
The Nines is a difficult format to pick, especially with some of the more fancied premiership sides picking less experienced squads. Ex-Sydney Swan Nick Davis will get a run for the Roosters.
I think there’s a fair chance of a Broncos quinella. Brisbane’s NRLW team are the benchmark of that competition. Any team with Ali Brigginshaw running the show will go close. If there is an upset, I think it will be the Dragons with Isabelle Kelly coming over from the Roosters.
For the men, it will be difficult for teams to contain the likes of Payne Haas, David Fifita and Anthony Milford. Fifita was sensational in this format late last year and I expect to see that again.
Of the other teams, Parramatta, Penrith and Cronulla are probably the ones to watch, all assembling strong squads. Shaun Johnson, at his best, is just about the best Nines player in the world and he will be looking for a strong start to quieten his critics.
But, for me, it’s a Broncos quinella.
When: 5:40pm (AEDT)
Where: HBF Park, Perth
TV: Fox League
Online: NRL Live, Foxtel app or Foxtel now
Betting favourites: NRLW Brisbane Broncos $2.25, NRL Parramatta Eels $5.50