By Stephen Gallagher
Thursday, May 10
Wests Tigers v Cowboys, Leichhardt Oval, 21.50NZT
After three losses in a row, it’s probably a good time the Tigers are playing at their spiritual home (albeit on an awkward Thursday fixture).
The Tigers have to tighten up their defence. This was magnificent for their first six games. The last three, not so much.
The belief is most definitely there, but just need to work harder.
The Cowboys are lingering very low on the table. These are the sorts of games they win to help them boost confidence.
It should go down to the wire.
Friday, May 11
Knights v Panthers, McDonald Jones Stadium, 18.00NZT
I’m excited by the prospects of this game. Two teams that have been strong this season going head to head.
The Knights fans will be out in force, like they are every week. Just to help their side get over the line.
The Panthers are having some injury concerns, but they’re still a confident side.
Plenty of positive attacking football on display here. Should be an interesting one. Panthers to win it.
Bulldogs v Eels, ANZ Stadium, 21.50NZT
This game will be brilliant or a shit show. That almost sums up these two teams this season.
Both lingering with two wins in nine starts, they’re really underperforming.
Both sides have been shuffling their teams around all season, which hasn’t helped their cause.
Lose, and the season is cooked. That’s what it could come down to here. The Eels have been good over the last three weeks, but it’ll be whoever can defend their line the best. Hard to know though!
Saturday, May 12
Mason Lino tore the Roosters to shreds last time, and has the privilege of attempting to again due to a Shaun Johnson injury.
The Warriors are looking to win their eighth game of the season, more than they did in the entire 2017 campaign.
It’s also the Roosters first game out of Sydney all year.
The Warriors should get the job done. Roosters are far from convincing, and aren’t stringing two good performances together.
Storm v Titans, Suncorp Stadium, 19.30NZT
The Storm were blown off the park by a hot Dragons side last Sunday, as well as some dodgy officiating (cue eye roll emoji).
The Titans are no doubt going to feel the full wrath of this. I feel sorry for them.
Melbourne will blitz the Gold Coast off the park, in what is the first of a double header at Suncorp Stadium.
If the Titans can put up any resistance, good on them. Just can’t see anything other than a convincing Storm win.
Sea Eagles v Broncos, Suncorp Stadium, 21.30NZT
And the second of the double headers sees the Sea Eagles at home (what the?) against the Broncos…..
Anyway, the Sea Eagles are favourites for the spoon, but they’re too good to be last.
The Broncos will however give them a really good once over on this meeting.
Brisbane are finding their feet. The Sea Eagles are barely standing. Brisbane will become a well-oiled machine in a win that will help their cause. Sea Eagles won’t be poor though.
Sunday, May 13
Rabbitohs v Dragons, ANZ Stadium, 16.00NZT
South Sydney welcome back the suspension king Sam Burgess for this big clash.
With plenty of Dragons players on the verge of Origin selection, another strong showing will definitely help their causes. They’ve been prolific as a team all season long, and I can’t see it letting up here.
The Bunnies are always tough to beat though. Especially on their day. Will need to be a special performance for them to tame the Dragons at ANZ.
Raiders v Sharks, GIO Stadium, 18.10NZT
The Raiders have found a bit of a groove. Winning four of their last five is a definitely positive after their shocking start.
The Sharks are sitting in eighth and will look to push for a victory here.
They get a few players back from injury which helps experience.
Canberra still haven’t shown a full 80 minute performance this season that they’d be proud of. A tough match here could be the go.
Hard to separate these two on paper, but I will tip the home side.
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