NRL 2008 ~ Round 19 Preview

18 07 2008

Yes, I am back after another hiatus, this time family enforced. Damn nuisances with their by-pass surgery. Anyway, gonna be snappy this week so straight into it.

Cowboys vs Broncos.

Broncos captain Darren Lockyer returned last week after yet another recovery period for his injured knee. Cowboys skipper Jonathan Thurston is out, after having minor knee surgery on his meniscus (?), for up to six weeks. Cowboys will not win again until he returns and this week will see the Broncos deliver them their 11th straight loss.

Broncos by 20

Sea Eagles vs Eels

Sea Eagles are the team to beat at the moment having won 9 of their last 10 matches. Eels are without sensational five eighth Feleti Mateo and Luke Burt has been dropped from first grade. Their forwards are their biggest problem though and will be no match for the Sea Eagles pack. However, if history is any thing to go by this is the one game the Eels are most likely to lift for. I’ll go with the upset.

Eels by 6

Titans vs Panthers

After their sensational win against top four side the Roosters last week the Titans now know they can win without Prince and Bailey. Expect that confidence to be on show. Panthers have been solid without being sensational.

Titans by 10

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NRL 2008 ~ Round 13 Preview

6 06 2008

With State of Origin 2 next week, this round sees a few teams, especially Melbourne and Brisbane, missing many of their star players. This is a good week for some teams such as St George/Illawarra and Wests to grab a couple of “bonus” points for the season.

Warriors vs Rabbitohs

As usual, the Warriors are expected to win at home. With Steve Price missing again, this time for Origin duty, their go forward may be blunted. The Rabbitohs have a fair few Kiwis in their side and might treat this as a home coming. I’m tipping an upset, for no real reason.

Rabbitohs by 10

Dragons vs Broncos

This is without doubt the top billing match of the round. The Broncos are missing 6 players through Origin commitments and Justin Hodges is suspended. For the Dragons, Hornby has been overlooked for NSW this time around but Gasnier and Cooper are out again on rep duties. This opens the way for Wendell Sailor to make his return to the NRL after a seven year absence. He looks just as big and strong as he did when he switched codes and I am sure he will turn in a great performance against his old club and mentor, Wayne Bennett.

Dragons by 10

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NRL 2008 ~ Round 11 Preview

23 05 2008

What a week it has been for NRL fans. The State of Origin opener lived up to expectation though was quite disappointing if you are a Queensland supporter. More on this later.

This week once again sees an abbreviated round in the NRL with only five games being played. Unfortunately for teams like the Storm, Roosters, Sharks and Dragons, many players from Wednesday night now have to turn around and play for their clubs over the weekend.

Sea Eagles vs Dragons

Dragons will be feeling good after their win over Storm last weekend even though the Melbourne team was missing 9 regular first graders. Brett Stewart comes back into the Sea Eagles side after being their only Origin representative. Safest player in the comp at the back of the field and will want to replicate his Origin effort. Key for the Dragons will be how Mark Gasnier comes out after a big game on Wednesday night. If Gaz carries that form into the game and gets more involvement than he has early in the season, the Dragons may just get an upset.

Sea Eagles by 14

Rabbitohs vs Storm

I honestly don’t know what to say …………… ???

Melbourne are way too good. They will make the Bunnies look like a school boy team.

Flogging of the year – Storm by 40+

Tigers vs Titans

Tigers received a rocket from coach Tim Sheens after last weeks dismal performance in their win against an understrength Knights. Wull need to lift another three notches to win this one. Titans will be out to prove that their recent away wins are no fluke and that deserve their place as sole competition leaders. Scott Prince will lift even more against his old side. Should be a close fought match.

Titans by 8

Warriors vs Roosters

The Kiwis will be lucky to win against an inform and rampaging Roosters outfit that includes 4 New South Wales Origin forwards. The Roosters though must take better care of the leather when in possession than they did in the first half last week.

Roosters by 18

Bulldogs vs Sharks

The Bulldogs played well last week to give the Titans a real fright while the Sharks, minus Gallen and Bird, overcame a depleted Broncos side. Bulldogs have improved week to week and I think they can do the Sharks in a close game.

Bulldogs by 10.

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