Last weekend was absolute carnage for a lot of the topsides in the NRL. Not only was there a couple of upsets but also the Roosters, Cowboys and Rabbitohs suffered injuries to key players, which could tarnish their push towards a premiership. Read on for our NRL Round 25 betting tips.
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South Sydney Rabbitohs vs Brisbane Broncos (Thursday 7.45pm AEST)
The Rabbits and Broncos both looked lacklustre in their losses last weekend and failed to demonstrate much in attack. The Bulldogs penetrated the defence of the Bunnies far too easily and they weren’t playing like a side that wanted to cement a position in the top four. It got worse for them when Greg Inglis limped off with a knee injury and now he has had surgery and will miss at least the next two matches.
The Broncos escaped the round injury free and that was a big win for them despite their loss. They remained in Sydney after their loss and travel won’t be an issue for them. They have dropped off the top of the ladder but they will put the pressure back on the Roosters with a win against the Inglis-less Bunnies.
Manly Sea Eagles vs Sydney Roosters (Friday 7.45pm AEST)
The Sea Eagles practically threw away their season when they lost to Parramatta last weekend in what was an anti-climactic end for them as they have looked so strong over the last two months. They mathematically still have a chance but with the Dragons now two competition points ahead of them and with a superior points differential, it will take something special for them to make it. That shouldn’t stop them from coming out with a point to prove in front of their home crowd for the final time for a lot of the players as well as Coach Geoff Toovey.
The injuries to Jared Waerea-Hargreaves and Mitchell Pearce will be a massive blow for the Roosters but they replace an international with another internation when Sam Moa makes his return this weekend. The forward pack of the tri-colours will be tested but it gives a good opportunity for not only their representative players to step up but also their young forwards now have an opportunity to show they have what it takes to be dominant NRL players. The Sea Eagles should come away with a win in a close one though.
Parramatta Eels vs Cronulla Sharks (Saturday 3pm AEST)
The Sharks bounced back last weekend and despite letting the Tigers back into the contest, they stepped it up a gear and were able to score the most points they had in a match in three years. The Eels will put up a fight but with the Sharks having such a dominant forward pack, especially their backrow of Luke Lewis, Wade Graham and Paul Gallen, they should overpower and be too disciplined for the Eels in this one.
Newcastle Knights vs Canterbury Bankstown Bulldogs (Saturday 5.35pm AEST)
The Bulldogs and Knights picked up two big wins last weekend and both have a lot to play for this weekend. The Bulldogs are looking to fight for a home semi-final whilst the Knights are looking to finish the season strongly for club legend and interim coach Danny Buderus. The Doggies forward pack is one of the best in the league and with Josh Reynolds still on the sideline their bench is full of big men and there is no space for a utility player. Their halves and back line are firing on the back of the work of their big men and, despite the late run of form and the Knights good record on “old boys” day, they won’t stand a chance in this one.
Melbourne Storm vs North Queensland Cowboys (Saturday 7.30pm AEST)
The Storm were very disappointing against the Knights on Monday night. They had an opportunity to move into the top four as they would have leapfrogged the Rabbitohs with their better points differential. However, their loss kept them in 6th place and they now mathematically can still miss the finals altogether with two tough games remaining.
Coach Craig Bellamy ripped into his side at half-time and I can imagine much of the same would have happened after the match and throughout this week. The short turnaround could affect the side but they should be up for this match and with the Cowboys needing to travel from New Zealand and without Michael Morgan and James Tamou it should be a great opportunity for the Storm to cement their position in the finals.
Wests Tigers vs New Zealand Warriors (Sunday 2pm AEST)
The NRL world was shocked on Wednesday morning when the Tigers club made the announcement that captain and club legend Robbie Farah would be shown the door at the end of the season with two years remaining on his contract. It will be interesting to see how the team reacts to that this weekend and the performance they put on.
Meanwhile the Warriors came out of the blocks in a sprint last weekend when they fired out to a 16-point lead against the Cowboys. The match was then turned on its head after an injury delay to James Tamou and the North Queensland side would score 50 unanswered points to smash the Warriors. This could be one of the more entertaining matches of the round as I expect a lot of points to be scored.
Gold Coast Titans vs St George Illawarra Dragons (Sunday 4pm AEST)
The Titans were impressive on the weekend against the Raiders however the Green Machine was poor and they clearly weren’t up for the contest. The star of the game was youngster Kane Elgey who scored a try and laid on three try assists in the victory and he is continuing to make his case to be a star of the future. The Dragons however got the win but were arguably the second-best side on the field and were lucky the Panthers were unable to make the most of their opportunities. If it wasn’t for Gareth Widdop putting in a brilliant performance they could have easily suffered a devastating loss. They now have their hopes of a finals appearance in their own hands and will need a win this weekend to keep it that way, however a trip up north could be dangerous for them.
Canberra Raiders vs Penrith Panthers (Monday 7pm AEST)
This match has nothing on the line but pride as both of these sides are looking forward to the offseason, particularly the Panthers who will be looking at their medical staff and praying that their side can remain healthy next year.
The Raiders have had an improved season and have a lot they can build on for next year, they will be wanting to end their year strongly and with this match being on home soil, they should come away with a victory.
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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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