Just two rounds of the NRL to go and this weekend's slate offers some fantastic games with plenty on the line! We are back with a full betting preview of all the Round 24 matchups below.
The Tigers return to Campbelltown against Manly with their top 8 hopes hanging by a thread. They couldn’t get past the Dragons last week in a disappointing 20-10 loss at Leichardt. Which means they need to win this one easily and hope other results go their way. Meanwhile, the Sea Eagles continued their horror second halves going down 42-34 against the Titans. They’ve now conceded 20+ in 4 of their last 5 and the Tigers attack should have success. They also thrashed the Sea Eagles in Round 6 by 26 points. So with their top 8 hopes still alive, the Tigers should win. But I like the overs between these 2 sides. In the last 13 meetings, the over is 10-2-1 and the last 2 have totalled 50 or more points.
Friday night footy kicks off with a top 8 battle at Mt Smart. Both sides are coming off a loss so they should be desperate to building winning form before the finals. For the home side, Blake Green is out and that will likely impact the Warriors attack. They’ve also returned a 1-5 record against top 8 sides at this venue this season. So the trend at Mt Smart is the unders, which is 9-2 in 2018. The Panthers attack hasn’t improved over the last 2 weeks, having scored under 20 points against the Knights and Titans. It’s doubtful that will improve against the Warriors home defence which is only allowing 15 points on average.
The Cowboys faithful bids farewell to Johnathan Thurston in North QLD in this matchup. Unfortunately, the Cowboys season hasn’t panned out the way they hoped. So they will be playing the Eels in the bottom of the ladder clash. Parramatta will be on the road again after a 20-4 loss in Melbourne last week. After previously crushing the Dragons 40-4, they’re showing why they’ll likely finish bottom 4. So while I see the Cowboys winning, this is a still tough game to bet on with little value in the betting.
Canberra’s tough run home continues as they face the Rabbitohs at home. But after upsetting the Roosters 14-12 last week, they should be pretty confident. Souths are coming off a disappointing defensive effort in Brisbane as they went down 38-18. They were likely flat after a gruelling battle with the Roosters the week before. In Canberra, they have a 3-0 record since 2010 and they’ve all been high scoring. So I’m predicting another attacking style of game. The Raiders own the best attack in the game by points scored and have a great record against the over this season. In the end, the over is 3-0 when these two sides meet in Canberra. It’s also 10-1 at any venue since 2010 and the last meeting in Round 7 totalled 64 points.
Super Saturday continues to the Gold Coast with the Titans hosting the Storm. Melbourne travels to the GC with a number of injury concerns and the suspension of Will Chambers. Cam Smith has been named but it wouldn’t surprise if he’s a late out. The Titans produced a second half comeback last week to beat the Sea Eagles 42-34. So I think this could be a danger game for the Storm, especially with so many injuries. Which will make this a tough game to predict.
Saturday’s NRL action ends with a cracking contest between the Roosters and Broncos at Allianz Stadium. Brisbane roared back into form with a huge win over the Rabbitohs. The 36-18 victory ended a 2 game losing streak so they’ll head to Sydney with confidence. On the other hand, the Roosters 5 game winning streak was snapped by the Raiders in a 2 point defeat. They were probably flat after their previous battle with the Rabbitohs and they’ll need to be up for this clash. In the head to head, the last 3 meetings have finished under 6 points so I can see another close but high scoring encounter in the both teams to score 13+ bet. This bet has saluted in the last 3 meetings and 5 of the last 6. The Roosters are 5-1 against the 13+ bet in their last 6 games this season and also have a 6-0 record after a loss. So I expect their attack to get back on track. At this venue, the Broncos are 7-4 against the 13+ bet and 15-7 at any venue this season.
The Sharks will aim for their 8th straight win over the Knights when they face off at Shark Park this week. They crushed them 48-10 in Round 12 as well. At Shark Park, the home side has beaten bottom 8 sides with a 5-1 record but most games have been close affairs. With the Knights coming off a 20-12 win over the Panthers, hopefully they can produce a similar effort in defence to stop the Sharks. So I think this should be another close finish at this venue. The margin has fallen under 10.5 points in 9 of 11 games here this season. It’s also 7-4 against the 6.5 margin. The Sharks have won 13 of 14 games by the 1-12 margin so they definitely love a close finish that’s for sure. Also, in the last meeting at this venue, Cronulla won via a field goal.
The round concludes with a rivalry matchup between the Dragons and Bulldogs at Jubilee Oval. St George finally ended a 3 game losing streak with a 20-10 win over the Tigers last week. After previously allowing the Eels to run riot in a 40-4 loss, the defensive effort was a pleasing sign. The Bulldogs continue to be a thorn in a few sides top 8 hopes with a 3-1 record in their last 4. Last round, they upset the Warriors by a field goal at ANZ. So this should be another close margin with the Bulldogs looking to cause an upset, especially against the Dragons. In Round 14, the two sides played in a 2 point margin and this should be a similar type of game. The 10 point margin is also 4-2 between these two sides since 2015.
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