FRIDAY: Penrith Panthers (1st) V Sydney Roosters (4th) – Panthers Stadium – 22.50NZT
This is going to be a real test of just how good the Panthers are.
The Roosters will be hurting substantially after a 60 point drubbing by Souths, and they will want to show their ability as they chase the three-peat.
Penrith’s form has been incredible, and they’ve been dominating teams all year.
If they control the game from their halves, they’ll go a long way to getting the week off.
Can never write the Roosters off though.
TIP: Panthers 1-12
SATURDAY: Canberra Raiders (5th) V Cronulla Sharks (8th) – GIO Stadium – 20.40NZT
These two played each other last week, and a second-string Raiders still dominated Cronulla.
It doesn’t help that the Sharks have yet to beat a top eight side in 2020, so they’ll have to create their own history to win this game.
A sharp spine by the Raiders will be the difference in my opinion. Two strong running halves, a solid fullback, and an energetic hooker will help them pick the Sharks apart.
Cronulla have to put it all on the line here and play the best they have this season.
TIP: Raiders 13+
– Melbourne Storm (2nd) V Parramatta Eels (3rd) – Suncorp Stadium – 22.50NZT
It was the Storm who burnt the Eels finals hopes in 2019, and they’ll look to win this one too and get a week off.
Parramatta get a big return with Dylan Brown back, but I just don’t know if his inclusion will be enough to get the Eels over the line.
Melbourne ooze class, and I think they could put some points on Parramatta here.
I see this being a fiery affair.
TIP: Storm 13+
SUNDAY: South Sydney Rabbitohs (6th) V Newcastle Knights (7th) – ANZ Stadium – 18.05NZT
I’d say these are the two most inconsistent sides in the finals this year, but I think a lot of that comes down to injuries.
Souths really stamped their mark with an emphatic victory last week, and it’d all be in vain if they didn’t back it up this week.
Newcastle have the ability to win this, it’s just whether or not they make it work on the day.
If the Rabbitohs are able to build early pressure, I’d expect them to make it count at the end of the game.
TIP: Rabbitohs 1-12
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