By Stephen Gallagher
Bulldogs 32 Eels 12
The Bulldogs didn’t exactly start the stronger of the two – but they definitely finished the stronger side. The Eels had a few injuries to key players, but that shouldn’t have really affected them too much.
The Bulldogs showed off their backline flair and ended up dominating Parramatta.
Broncos 10 Sharks 2
So these two teams aren’t exactly playing exciting football, but the Broncos did enough to get up against the Sharks. Being down 2-0 at half time, it was a second half serge of something that got them the points at Remondis. However still not entirely convinced in their efforts.
Panthers 40 Titans 0
So Penrith staked their claim as a team that’ll be hard to beat after they thrashed the hapless Titans.
The Titans offered a little bit in the beginning, but it was a strong defensive effort, as well as a hattrick to Jamal Idris that helped Penrith keep the Gold Coast Titans side scoreless. Titans did not click.
Sea Eagles 24 Storm 22
These two sides are rivals from years back – and in a scappy and controversial game the Sea Eagles got the lollies on home soil. They did enough in the first half. The Storm looked a little off at times, but not without lack of effort.
The referees copped a bit, but I think the best side won.
Knights 16 Cowboys 14
The Knights have made two strong second half comebacks in two weeks. This one more formidable than the last. The Cowboys really looked like a different team from their first week thrashing, but they didn’t do enough defensively to hold off the fast-finishing Knights.
I would be interested to see the Knights in a full 80 minute performance, it could be incredible.
Rabbitohs 34 Roosters 26
The Rabbitohs made it two from two in a back n forth battle. The Rabbitohs shot out quickly, and were reeled in – but they had the final say in what was a great game against their oldest foes. The Roosters were courageous, and shouldn’t be too thrown back after this loss.
Warriors 18 Raiders 6
The Warriors got up in the Nations capital of Australia for the second time in two years. This game was 6-6 at half time, and it was a critical knock on by the Raiders off the second half kick off that cost them the game.
This game was played fast-paced and the Warriors should take a lot out of keeping Canberra scoreless in the second half.
Wests Tigers 22 Dragons 4
The Tigers put on a first half master class, and that was enough to get by. Their second half performance was a little more sloppy than coach Taylor would have preferred, but they were never in danger of losing this fixture. The Dragons need to work hard on execution.
FRIDAY: • Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles v Canterbury Bankstown Bulldogs – Brookvale Oval 21.35NZT
Manly were good enough, without being great. The Bulldogs put an empatic win on.
Brookvale is known as a hard place to win at for visiting teams – but the Sea Eagles need more than their previous reputation to get a win over the Bulldogs.
Sea Eagles 1-12
• Brisbane Broncos V North Queensland Cowboys – Suncorp Stadium 22.35NZT
Two teams who haven’t set the world on fire in the last two weeks – but that doesn’t mean this game can’t be electric. The Cowboys have had the wood over their Queensland counterparts of late, but playing at Suncorp will be tough for them. The Broncos aren’t firing on all cylinders just yet.
SATURDAY: • New Zealand Warriors V Parramatta Eels – Mount Smart Stadium 17.00NZT
The Warriors showed up on the back of an outstanding performance of Sam Tomkins – first home game of the season should be interesting.
Parramatta have horrible memories of their last visit to Mount Smart.
Can the Warriors get a win at home?
• Canberra Raiders V Saint George Illawarra Dragons – GIO Stadium 19.30NZT
The Raiders look good, despite losing last week – the Dragons look very average on attack and defence. The Dragons also have a terrible record in Canberra.
I think the Raiders will get the goods here. Unless the Dragons work an incredible amount on their attack.
• Melbourne Storm V Cronulla Sharks – AAMI Park 21.30NZT
The Storm are a good side at home, and the Sharks are still yet to find their feet. It will be interesting to see how this game plays out – I think the Sharks will struggle and remain winless. The Storm will win, but it won’t be a thrashing.
SUNDAY: • South Sydney Rabbitohs V Wests Tigers – ANZ Stadium 18.00NZT
The Rabbitohs are definitely the team to beat, and what better chance for the Tigers to find where abouts they are than a battle against the best.
The Rabbitohs were clinical when they needed to be, but were not perfect. The Tigers lacked in the second half, and will need to tighten up
• Gold Coast Titans V Newcastle Knights – CBUS Super Stadium 20.30NZT
The Titans may look a bit better on paper, but I don’t know just how much that will help them on the field. The Knights look like a top eight team two weeks in – so if they can make it three from three, they will be rocketing up in people picks.
The Titans need to redeem themselves after their donut last week.
MONDAY: • Sydney Roosters V Penrith Panthers – Allianz Stadium 21.00NZT
The battle of the west heats up this Monday fixture.
The Roosters were good last week, while the Panthers were great – that could almost be the difference in this game.
The Roosters will be able to work on what went wrong last week, while the Panthers need to learn to not be complacent.
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