STATE of Origin Two is done and dusted and now we can move onto the 15th round of the NRL this weekend which features a Super Saturday triple-header.
The week kicks off this Friday when the Tigers take on the Manly Sea Eagles at Brookvale Oval where Daly Cherry-Evans will try and silence his critics after an ordinary performance on Wednesday.
Saturday will see the Raiders take on the Cowboys at GIO Stadium, the Gold Coast Titans vs. the New Zealand Warriors up in the Sunshine State, while the Bulldogs will meet the Penrith Panthers at ANZ Stadium.
Sunday footy features another two good games. Many of Queensland’s Origin stars will return for the Melbourne vs Broncos game, with the Dragons set to do battle with the Roosters later that night.
The Eels and the Rabbitohs have a bye this week, giving both teams a chance to have a much needed rest.
Sea Eagles vs. Tigers
Friday, June 19, 7:45pm, Brookvale Oval
Sea Eagles – $1.45 (-6.5)
Tigers – $2.75 (+6.5)
Bookmakers appear to be confident with the Sea Eagles this week, opening as very short favourites at $1.45, despite their poor record this season.
Daly Cherry-Evans will be looking to rebound after an extremely disappointing State of Origin Two where he looked hesitant and under pressure.
He will be partnering Kieran Foran who returns and when you have players such as Steve Matai and Brett Stewart in the lineup, the Sea Eagles pose a big threat.
The Tigers time on paper appears to be talented, but as a team they simply don’t click. When you have James Tedesco, Luke Brooks and Aaron Woods in your side, you should be sitting in a much better position on the table.
They will have to click sooner or later so respect the +6.5 with bookmakers.
Tip: Tigers +6.5 ($1.90) at Sportsbet.com.au
Exotic: Tedesco to score first at $12
Raiders vs. Cowboys
Saturday, June 20th, 3:00pm, GIO Stadium
Raiders – $1.77 (-1.5)
Cowboys – $2.05 (+1.5)
If you’re wondering why the Cowboys are underdogs in this game, we don’t have the answers.
We understand that the likes of Johnathan Thurston and Michael Morgan will be tired, but they have been in franchise-best form and their come-from-behind win last time out was outstanding.
The Raiders have been going well, sitting 7th on the NRL ladder and their team is dangerous on paper, but they are still very inconsistent.
Strike players like Blake Austin and Sisa Waqa make the Raiders a difficult outfit to come up against and their home record is good, but we’ll take the value with the better team – the North Queensland Cowboys.
Tip: Cowboys to win ($2.05) at CrownBet.com.au
Exotic: Cowboys -3.5 at $2.46
Titans vs. Warriors
Saturday, June 20th, 5:35pm, Cbus Super Stadium
Titans – $2.05 (+1.5)
Warriors – $1.75 (-1.5)
This is a classic game between two sides looking to reignite their seasons. The Titans scored an impressive win last week, but that came up against a Bulldogs side missing their Origin players.
The Warriors on the other hand were unable to capitalise on the Sydney City Roosters missing their Origin players and that win will cost them big time.
They now face a tough road game against the Titans and if they’re not careful they will slip out of playoffs contention.
Ryan Hoffman returns after a strong Origin performance and we’ve giving the Warriors one last chance to save their season.
Tip: Warriors to win ($1.75)
Exotic: Vatuvei to score ($2.30) at WilliamHill.com.au
Bulldogs vs. Panthers
Saturday, June 20th, 7:35pm, ANZ Stadium
Bulldogs – $1.45 (-6.5)
Panthers – $2.75 (+6.5)
The Bulldogs showed everyone what their Origin players mean to them last week as they suffered a bad loss to the Gold Coast Titans.
But, with their stars back in the squad the bookmakers have quoted them at $1.45 over the Panthers which are struggling to find their 2015 identity.
The Panthers are however coming off a Round 14 bye and they welcome back Jamie Soward, the key to their attack. They do still have injury concerns with other players and that could be a major factor against the big Bulldogs pack.
Expect the Bulldogs to right the ship here and for their forwards to dominate through the middle.
Tip: Bulldogs to win at $1.45
Exotic: Greg Eastwood to score first ($26) at Sportsbet.com.au
Knights vs. Sharks
Sunday, June 21, 2:05pm, Hunter Stadium
Knights – $1.75 (-1.5)
Sharks – $2.05 (+1.5)
Paul Gallen suffered a rib injury in State of Origin last Wednesday, but he is listed for Sunday’s game at Hunter Stadium.
If he takes part in the game expect the Sharks price to say at $2.05, but if he pulls out then that price should drift out to somewhere around the $2.45 mark.
There isn’t much splitting these two teams as the bookmaker prices suggest, so keep checking in for the injury report and back the Sharks if Paul Gallen is playing.
Otherwise, we’re leaning towards a close contest and the fulltime draw could be the option.
Tip: Sharks to win at $2.05
Exotic: Fulltime draw ($23) at Sportsbet.com.au
Storm vs. Broncos
Sunday, June 21, 4:05pm, AAMI Park
Storm – $2 (+1.5)
Broncos – $1.80 (-1.5)
This is the highlight game of the round as the Storm welcome back their stars from Origin – including Billy Slater who was in doubt to play for the Storm for the rest of the season.
With Cooper Cronk still out, the Storm will rely on the likes of Slater and Cameron Smith who played well in Origin on Wednesday.
The Broncos on the other hand welcome Justin Hodges, Darius Boyd, Matt Gillett, Sam Thaiday, Corey Parker and Josh McGuire, so there is plenty of experience back in their team.
It’s never easy to side with the team entering Storm territory, but we can’t help looking at the Broncos team on paper as it just looks so good!
Tip: Broncos to win ($1.80) at CrownBet.com.au
Exotic: Broncos +2.5 at $1.52
Dragons vs. Roosters
Monday, June 22, 7:00pm, Allianz Stadium
Dragons – $2.50 (+4.5)
Roosters – $1.53 (-4.5)
Another premier game to end the week as the high-flying Dragons take on the Roosters.
The Roosters scored a last minute try to down the Warriors last Saturday night and they were missing some key players in that game.
Michael Jennings, Boyd Cordner, Mitchell Pearce and Aidan Guerra all return for the Roosters and this all-Sydney game should provide some great excitement.
The Dragons have and are currently exceeding expectations, but don’t count them out towards the end of the season.
They have one of the best halves combinations in the league with Gareth Widdop and Benji Marshall so they shouldn’t be overlooked here.
Tip: Roosters to win ($1.53) at Sportsbet.com.au
Exotic: Under 36.5 points
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