The NRL season continues post State of Origin this weekend and four sides will receive their last bye of the year meaning that there are six NRL games this weekend. Continue reading for our NRL Round 18 betting tips.
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Canberra Raiders vs Newcastle Knights (Friday 7.45pm AEST)
The Knights travel to Canberra with both their halves pairing returning for the first time in weeks. This should be a massive boost for the Knights who have struggled since Round 5. However, I expect the two to be a lacking a little in combination and could show a bit of rust.
Dane Gagai will back up from his Origin duty whilst Beau Scott will be absent due to suspension. Josh Papali will also back up after being a part of the record victory for Queensland on Wednesday night.
The Novocastrians have lost their last five matches, whilst the Raiders last victory came against the away side with a big 44-22 win in Newcastle in Round 13. They will be playing infront of a home crowd at practically full strength and we should see a similar result in this one, as the Knights will continue to fall.
TIP: Raiders -6.5 @ $1.92 with Palmerbet
Penrith Panthers vs Sydney Roosters (Saturday 5.35pm AEST)
The Panthers have been able to string two wins in a row whilst the Roosters have won three on the trot. They are two form sides and in last year's first opening final it was the Panthers who came out on top. The men from the west have also looked more dominant whilst the three victories for the Bondi boys were very unconvincing.
Matt Moylan and James Segyaro are both still on the sidelines but their replacements DZE and Apisai Koroisau have been doing the job well, however the Roosters are now at full strength and should be able to overcome the home side on Saturday.
TIP: Roosters @ $2 with Ladbrokes enhanced price promotion
Canterbury Bankstown Bulldogs vs Brisbane Broncos (Saturday 7.30pm AEST)
This should be an interesting match with both sides having a lot of players back up from Wednesday night’s State of Origin. The Bulldogs have five players who are backing up whilst the Broncos will have four players as Justin Hodges was not named and will not play as Jack Reed will take his place.
It will be a big match and it will come down to which side is able to dominate the middle of the field and make the most of their opportunities. The Blues players who suffered the embarrassing loss on Wednesday night should be fired up for a big one whilst the Broncos players could well feel the post Origin hangover.
TIP: Bulldogs 1-12 @ $2.80 with Crownbet
New Zealand Warriors vs Melbourne Storm (Sunday 2pm AEST)
The Warriors and Storm are both coming off of a bye but the Warriors are the side that has shown better form of late. They are finally starting to click and live up to their potential and they have crept into the top 8 of the ladder. Whilst the Storm are on the decline, they have been without Cooper Cronk the last few matches and are without Billy Slater for the rest of the season. The side also has a poor record against the Warriors.
Cameron Smith has had a huge week as he has been criticised by 60 minutes for the way he acted on the field whilst Alex McKinnon was receiving treatment. After the match on Wednesday night he could very well be emotionally and physically drained and Cooper Cronk could also be exhausted.
The Warriors should get the win and put a score line on their opponents this weekend.
TIP: Warriors 13+ @ $3.10 with Palmerbet
Cronulla Sharks vs St George Illawarra Dragons (Sunday 4pm AEST)
These two sides last played in Round 12 and the Dragons made a statement by pumping the Sharks 42-6. Since then the Dragons have lost four in a row and have dropped to a position where they could easily fall out of the eight in the coming weeks. They will be looking to get their season back on track as they travel to the Shire this weekend.
The Sharks have had an up and down run on form since then as they have won and lost multiple games. They are just outside the eight and a win here would put them equal with the Dragons on points.
Despite their position on the ladder, the Dragons have the worst attack in the competition with the least amount of line breaks and least amount of tries of all teams. They have won the majority of their matches on the back of their defence and they will need to be back to their defensive best this weekend to restrict the Sharks whilst also applying constant pressure to the home side. The men from Wollongong should turn things around this weekend.
TIP: Dragons @ $2.10 with WilliamHill
Gold Coast Titans vs Manly Sea Eagles (Monday 7pm AEST)
The Titans have fallen back down the ladder and despite their attack being strong all season on the right edge, they are coming up against Steve Matai and Jorge Tafua and they should be able to contain the flyer James Roberts. The Sea Eagles showed last week what they were capable of as they proved too strong for the Sharks and they will be looking to build on this as they make a late season push as the injury list grows shorter.
DCE and Foran have been able to play a few matches together and are at season best form. They will improve again this weekend and get a narrow victory against their opponents.
TIP: Manly 1-12 @ $3 with Sportsbet
Take note: Any of the tips in this article are simply the author’s opinion, so bet at your own risk and always gamble responsibly. Also be sure to check out the Before You Bet Twitter Page for all our thoughts in the lead up to bets! Happy punting!
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