The Sharks will host the Warriors in the final game of Round 17 in the NRL on Sunday from 4.05pm! As always, Scooby has you covered with a full preview and betting tips to round out the four game slate across the weekend in the NRL.
Cronulla Sharks v New Zealand Warriors
Netstrata Jubilee Stadium, Sunday 11th July, 4.05pm (AEST)
The Sharks will want this game to come around quickly to erase their 26-18 loss to the Broncos on the road last week. On a 4-game winning streak, they headed into the game as favourites to extend their run of good form. After a strong start, the Sharks struggled to stop the momentum of their opponents (allowed 9.8m per carry and 672pcm) and in the end, they were unable to close out the match. It was a game they could’ve won too; with more possession (52%) and a 79% completion rate, they averaged 9.1m per carry, made 8 line breaks and missed just 27 tackles.
If anything, it will be a ‘wake up’ as the Finals approach and they attempt to hold onto a spot in the Top 8. The Warriors have the same goal; although, they are drifting further away after letting two winning opportunities slip in the past few weeks. This time, they suffered a 19-18 loss after leading 18-6 with 10 minutes remaining. A few poor decisions from players and lack of execution allowed the Dragons to get themselves back into the match, with the Warriors conceding 3 tries in 10 minutes to send the game into Golden Point. There were passages of positivity in their match, but consistency over 80 minutes was missing.
They had 46% possession, completed at 81%, average 9.3m per carry, had 644pcm, 4 line breaks and missed 26 tackles. It was thought that the acquisition of Townsend would improve their effectiveness to score points but that appears to still be absent. Thankfully, they are still just 2-points out of the Top 8 and the same margin behind their opponents here; a win could very much decide the standings at the end of the regular season.
Head-to-Head = Sharks 23 Warriors 15
At Netsrata Jubilee Stadium = Sharks 48% Warriors 33%
Last 10 Matches = Sharks 7 Warriors 3 – The average winning margin is 13.1 points for the Sharks and 3 points for the Warriors. In this time, 7 of the 10 matches have been decided by 8 points or less. The home team has a 50% winning record.
Both sides will be desperate to bounce back from their performance in Round 16 as each were beaten favourites. The Sharks have been given favouritism for this game and it is no surprise considering the Warriors have won just 2 matches in 6 attempts here. The Sharks welcome back Chambers and his experience to the centres (and team) but they are still without Moylan, with Tracey named at 5/8 and Trindall shifting back to the bench. The Warriors are boosted by the return of Walsh at fullback, Nikorima at 5/8 and recent acquisition of Matt Lodge to the club.The later adds further strength to the Warriors pack and allows power to also come off the bench.
This could be a point of difference in the match, with the Sharks perhaps struggling to halt their opponent’s momentum in the middle. They allow the 3rd highest number of metres to their opponents (1,573.9m) while the Warriors are in 8th (1,482m). The Warriors are a team which thrives on momentum, but it needs to be maintained for 80 minutes; they have been let down by this on numerous occasions this season. This game is a lot closer than the odds are suggesting and while there is a slight lean towards the Warriors ($2.45), take the history into account and invest around this game being a tight contest.
Either Team by 8.5 or Less