Round 7 of the NRL kicks off tonight with a couple of fairly unexciting games – Brisbane take on the Eels and and The Sharks are looking for a win against the Rabbitohs. The game of the round should be the annual ANZAC Day clash between the Sydney Roosters and the St George-Illawarra Dragons.
Brisbane vs Parramatta at Suncorp Stadium
Parramatta could not have looked any worse last week against the Bulldogs, especially in the second half where they were expected by many to take advantage of the relatively short rest period the Dogs had after their previous Monday night game.
The exact opposite was the case with the Dogs storming home for a huge win over the Eels, further shortening their odds to take out the wooden spoon this year.
The Bronco’s on the other hand continue to impress and should win by double digits at home.
Broncos – $1.27
Eels – $3.85
Broncos by 14
Cronulla vs South Sydney at ANZ Stadium
At the start of the season there were high hopes for Cronulla fans with the signing of Trent Barrett and their strong showing in 2008. So far however, there has been little to cheer for supporters in the Shire with The Sharks sitting at the very bottom of the ladder.
Their opponents tonight, The Rabbitohs have surprised many with some strong showings early on and go into this game as the hot favourites to come away with the two points which would cement their place inside the top 8.
Rabbitohs – $1.60
Sharks – $2.35
Rabbitohs by 6
Sydney Roosters vs St George Illawarra Dragons at the SFS
The Dragons have been one of the strongest teams of the comp so far this season and are really coming together well under new coach Wayne Bennett. The thing to like about the Dragons is their lack of ego – there are no big name superstars just a well drilled group of skilled players coming together as team.
This couldn’t be further from the truth with their opponents the Roosters, many of whose players seem to suffer under the burden of expectations. Their squad consists of many more rep players than the Dragons, but going on their form so far this year they are very hard to back.
One positive for the Roosters is that their last two losses have been very close and to strong opposition so they may closer to hitting some winning form than many people think. The only thing wrong with that idea is that they were 16-0 up last week against the warriors and were run down in the second half.
I think the match will be closer than the odds would suggest.
Dragons – $1.55
Roosters – $2.47
Dragons by 4
Melbourne Storm vs Warriors at Olympic Park Stadium
The Warriors were lucky to get the win last week against the Roosters and face a much tougher task this week on the road against the Storm.
Storm – $1.48
Storm by 8
North Qld Cowboys vs Manly Sea Eagles at Dairy Farmers Stadium
Both of these teams have had extremely disappointing starts to their season, falling far behind what the expectations were. The return of Brett Stewart seemed to fire Manly inot action so it will be interesting to see how they perform with him now out of action due to injury.
Cowboys – $1.65
Sea Eagles – 42.25
Cowboys by 6
Raiders vs Bulldogs at Canberra Stadium
The Bulldogs have had just the one loss so far this season and while the Raiders are a fast improving side and are playing at home, I think the Dogs have enough to get them across the line.
Raiders – $1.74
Bulldogs – $2.11
Bulldogs by 4
Wests Tigers vs Newcastle Knights at Campbelltown Stadium
While the Knights are the team sitting higher on the ladder, the Tigers are undefeated at home this season and will start this game as slight favourites in what should be a great match up in the west of Sydney
Tigers – $1.85
Knights – $1.95
Knights by 4
Penrith Panthers vs Gold Coast Titans at CUA Stadium
The Titans are the surprise competition leaders after round 6 and are playing a team who have managed to scrape together just the two wins so far this season. There form has suggested they are playing better than that and this should be a close match.
Panthers – $1.74
Titans – $2.11
Titans by 2
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