NRL ROUND 24
Broncos v Bulldogs
The Broncos showed last week against the Eels, particularly in their second half blitz, that they’re back and will be a very dangerous prospect come finals time and this match offers them the perfect chance to flex those muscles against a top four side. The Bulldogs have continued to pick up wins (albeit often hard fought) in the second half of the season but have lacked quality opposition of late with wins coming over the Sea Eagles, Knights and Dragons over the past three weeks, their last match against a top four side was a 36-0 thrashing by the Cowboys four weeks back.
The return to form of Milford was a big feature in the Broncos win over the Eels and he will be a handful here, along with Hunt who also looked like he’d regained some lost confidence.
The bookies have kept this fairly close but the Broncos have the stronger of the two sides and will have their tails up which should see them comfortably cover the relatively small line. Pick - 4 units on Broncos -5.5 or better point start
Panthers v Tigers
The loss of Tedesco is a huge blow for the Tigers as he’s been a key ingredient in their recent success so it’s definitely advantage Panthers going into this clash as they’re unchanged from the side which demolished the Knights.
These two sides are very similar in appearance with exciting youth in the halves, solid but unspectacular forward packs and both sides have generally exceeded expectations this season. It’s been the rise and rise of young Cleary in the halves for the Panthers that has sparked them into life as he’s gained confidence as the season has progressed and is arguably one of the form halves going round. Peter Wallace has also been huge for the Panthers at Hooker and plays the perfect support role round the rucks for Cleary, Moylan and co to orchestrate the attack.
Both sides are playing for their season here, it’s the Panthers who have the clear edge though as the loss of Tedesco for the Tigers can’t be understated. We’ll take the home side to cover the line. Pick - 3 units on Panthers -8.0 point start
Knights v Titans
The Knights season is shaping as one of the worst from any side in recent memory and things are not improving with yet another thumping loss to the Panthers last weekend, making it 142 points they’ve conceded in their past four games.
The Titans well and truly have a finals spot in their sights and will look at upping their points differential here with a huge win, which is very much on the cards as the Knights will be powerless to stop the avalanche once Hayne’s tail is up.
The line for the Titans to cover is huge given they’re playing in Newcastle and we’ll stay away from it, the value here is in the combined points line which looks manageable given how poor the Knights defence is and I can see them sneaking in a few tries of their own on what’s forecast to be a dry pitch. Pick - 3 units on total combined points 'over' 44.5 or better
Total Points Over 43.53 at 1.90-3
Total Points Over 43.53 at 1.90-3
Cowboys v Warriors
Well we certainly saw that coming, just when the Warriors were looking like genuine finals contenders they get thumped at home by a Rabbitohs side who exposed them up the middle and caused chaos with their kicking game. The Warriors will once again be faced with a large and foreboding forward pack here in the shape of the Cowboys and Thurston will be licking his lips reviewing how badly the Warriors defended against Reynolds kicking game – not good news all round for the Warriors.
With three losses on the trot the Cowboys will be anything but happy and will be absolutely fizzing for this clash, looking to delight their home fans with a nerve-settling performance.
The Warriors will try hard but ultimately be powerless to stop what will be a rampaging Cowboys pack and once they’re on the front foot Thurston and Morgan will do what they do best and bamboozle the back-pedalling defensive line of the Warriors.
I can see this getting very ugly for the Warriors and we’ll happily take the Cowboys to cover the line. Pick - 4 units on Cowboys -11.5 point start
WEEK RESULTS STAKES ROI BEST BET Grand Final
Week Three Finals
Week Two Finals
Week One Finals