The Big Marn’s NRL Round 20 Preview
This shapes up as the match of the round and will be Bulldogs’ coach Des Hasler’s first trip to Brookvale Oval since leaving the club.
Manly won 12-10 when these sides met earlier in the season at ANZ Stadium.
The Sea Eagles will be looking to bounce back after their shock loss to Newcastle last week and will be confident about their chances after winning the past three clashes against the Bulldogs.
Glenn Stewart and Steve Matai return to the Sea Eagles’ side for this huge clash.
Should be an outstanding match and the Sea Eagles at $1.65 with Sportingbet Australia is the way I’m leaning.
It’s an all-Queensland affair between big brother and little brother.
The Broncos have won the past six clashes against the Titans with the Titans’ last victory coming in 2009.
The Titans recorded an impressive win against the Raiders in Canberra last week and will be looking to build on that performance.
The Broncos had a hard fought victory over the Warriors and will fancy their chances against the Titans.
Brisbane need to win to keep their spot in the top four, while the Titans need to keep on winning to keep their finals hopes alive.
Broncos will be too strong and the $1.50 with Sportingbet Australia looks a good bet.
This shapes up as a huge match for both sides finals aspirations with the Warriors sitting in 9th on 20 points, while the Knights are on 18 points, two wins outside the top eight.
The Warriors have received a boost with young centre Konrad Hurrell named to take on the Knights.
The Knights caused a massive upset last week when they beat the Sea Eagles 32-6 and will be hoping to repeat that effort across the Tasman.
Newcastle faces an uphill battle with a poor recent record in New Zealand and they’ve lost eight of the past 10 clashes between the sides.
The Storm has been disappointing over the past month and there is a good chance that the Eels could be on the end of a thumping.
Melbourne has been joined by the Bulldogs at the top of the table so desperately need a win to get their season back on track.
It appears to be a two-horse race for the wooden spoon between the Eels and Panthers so the Eels will be hoping they can cause the upset of the season.
Billy Slater still remains on the sideline injured but the Storm will justify their $1.17 price with Sportingbet Australia when they put the Eels to the sword on Saturday night.
The Dragons have a good record against the Rabbitohs, winning 14 of the 19 clashes between the sides.
Souths won in golden point (19-18) courtesy of an Adam Reynold’s field goal when these sides met earlier in the season.
The Rabbitohs will be without their hooker Issac Luke for the next three weeks after he was charged with a dangerous throw against the Roosters.
The Dragons will welcome back Jamie Soward but I think the Rabbitohs should be too strong in a tight contest.
Both sides are coming off last start losses and will be desperate for a win in this one.
The Sharks slipped out of the top four with Souths’ win over the Roosters and this shapes up as a must win match at home.
The Raiders were disappointing in their loss to the Titans after their surprise victory over the Storm the week before and will need to improve on their 7/26 record at Toyota Stadium.
The Sharks will be without Paul Gallen and Jeremy Smith, while there are whispers that Josh Dugan could be a late inclusion.
Cronulla to get the job done at home but I wouldn’t be underestimating the Raiders if they repeat the performance they produced against the Storm.
How the Roosters react to their heartbreaking loss to the Rabbitohs could have a huge bearing on this match.
The Roosters have a decent record against the Panthers at Penrith but the Panthers will be desperate for the victory to avoid the wooden spoon battle with the Eels.
It appears the Roosters season is over after their heartbreaking loss to the Rabbitohs, so this match will come down to which side puts more pride in its jersey.
The Cowboys produced a big performance to defeat the Storm last week and need to back up that performance against the Tigers.
The Tigers got back into the winner’s circle and broke a three match losing streak by defeating the Panthers
North Queensland will be missing Ashley Graham through injury, while the Tigers will be without Keith Galloway.
The Tigers receive a boost with Gareth Ellis named to return after being sidelined since Round 5 and Adam Blair returns from his one week suspension.
A great match for Monday night football and I think the Cowboys are a real chance in this competition. The Cowboys at $1.67 with Sportingbet Australia is the way to go.
Melbourne Storm $4.25
Canterbury Bulldogs $5
Manly Sea Eagles $6
Brisbane Broncos $6
South Sydney Rabbitohs $7.50
North Queensland Cowboys $13
Wests Tigers $13