By Stephen Gallagher
Bulldogs 16 Sea Eagles 12
In a scrappy affair, the Bulldogs came away winners – This game was played on a pitch that was falling apart before kick-off and it looked awful.
The Bulldogs and Sea Eagles were both shades of what they can produce on the field, but only three weeks in that won’t be too much of a concern.
Broncos 44 Cowboys 22
Brisbane came out all guns blazing and blew away their Queensland counterparts early. The Cowboys were never going to catch their Broncos. The Broncos looked really sharp, but their second half performance let them down big time.
The Cowboys have a lot to work on – like actually butting together an 80 minute performance.
Warriors 29 Eels 16
The Warriors put on 20 points in 20 minutes in their first home performance. The Eels looked like they were a whole different side compared to the one which put on a blitzkrieg in Round One.
The Warriors started to gel, with their young stars really shining. The Eels were let down by a flat forward performance.
Dragons 22 Raiders 20
The Dragons looked like the Dragons in the first half, but they looked like a team winning the competition in their second half. Mary must have revved them up big time, because they were awesome in the second half.
Stuart’s Raiders were a big let down, and I have put big wraps on them this year – so it was disappointing to see them crumble at home like they did.
Storm 36 Sharks 18
The Sharks had about a 10% chance of winning this game, and by half time – it was about 1%.
The Storm were their normal Storm ways, and their halves pairing of Green and Cronk has taken shape early.
There are plenty of things to improve on for Cronulla, which I guess is a positive. However they are still winless.
Rabbitohs 20 Tigers 6
The Rabbitohs were in an arm wrestle for most of the match, mainly against one man – Marty Taupau. It came down to execution, and it was the reigning Premiers that took the most of their opportunities – to remain unbeaten in 2015. The Tigers were courageous.
Knights 20 Titans 18
The Knights just find ways to win, and the Titans find ways to lose. Never mind a video referee gaffe that was somehow awarded, it made no difference in the long run as the Knights were the team who played the long game and won. The Titans looked better with their players back, but the Knights were just better.
Roosters 20 Panthers 12
This game was a bit of a knock-on-a-thon for the first 25 minutes, but once both sides decided they wanted to hold on to the ball, it became a battle.
The Roosters shined in what was a real bruising fight, but this match will mainly be remembered for a horrific disallowed try that cost DWZ a try that involved a sensational finish. Disappointing the referees guess costs a team from scoring what should have been a try.
FRIDAY: • Parramatta Eels v South Sydney Rabbitohs – Pirtek Stadium 21.35NZT
This game will be thrilling, because the Eels will throw plenty of caution to the wind. The Rabbitohs will have to really be on point to get a win. There’s going to be plenty of niggle, but can the Eels compete for 80 minutes?
• Wests Tigers V Canterbury Bankstown Bulldogs – ANZ Stadium 21.35NZT
I think the Tigers will get up in this one, because they have been so close on plenty of occasions this season. The Bulldogs have been really strong this year, and that’s easy when you have the biggest forward pack in the comp.
Both sides will be bumping in to each other in a tremendous battle
SATURDAY:• Newcastle Knights V Penrith Panthers – Hunter Stadium 17.00NZT
These two sides have been really entertaining in 2015. The Knights who remain undefeated through three rounds have been in three big games, and this is the forth.
The Panthers who were unlucky last week will need to be as strong as they can be to overcome the Knights on the road.
• Cronulla Sharks V Gold Coast Titans – Remondis Stadium 19.30NZT
The battle of cellar-dwellers is in full flight! Who will get up, the Sharks at home, or the visiting Titans? Both sides have shown that they can actually piece together some good plays, but execution is the biggest concerns for both sides of the coin.
• Saint George Illawarra Dragons V Manly Warringah Sea Eagles – WIN Stadium 21.30NZT
Both sides with only one win on board this season. The Dragons with win last week, and Manly with a win in week two.
The Dragons need to run more directly, and if they can, they will get the cake.
The Sea Eagles are a proper physical side, and the Dragons will have to match that.
SUNDAY: • New Zealand Warriors V Brisbane Broncos – Mount Smart Stadium 14.00NZT
20 years ago the Warriors kicked off their campaign against the Broncos in a packed out Mount Smart Stadium, the Broncos claimed a victory that day – but of late, the Warriors have been getting the wins against Brisbane. The Warriors backline reshuffles again due to injury, but I still think they have the spark to get them over the line.
• Sydney Roosters V Canberra Raiders – Allianz Stadium 16.00NZT
Well the Roosters should go from strength to strength. The Raiders have been disappointing, and I don’t think they will be able to get up against a strong Sydney Roosters side.
The Roosters are just too powerful all over the field.
MONDAY: • North Queensland Cowboys V Melbourne Storm – 1300SMILES Stadium 21.00NZT
This is going to be a tense game. If the Cowboys lose, they will be winless through four – and if the Cowboys win, they will have to put a really big performance in and dig deep.
I think they will do it, three losses on the trot is probably too much for them, and they will want to prove just how good they can be.
Melbourne won’t be easy beats.
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