By Stephen Gallagher
THURSDAY: South Sydney Rabbitohs V Canterbury Bankstown Bulldogs – ANZ Stadium – 21.50NZT
This has the potential to be a banana skin game for the Rabbitohs, with the Bulldogs having nothing to play for other than trying desperately to avoid the wooden spoon.
A lot of the Rabbitohs success comes down to minimalising their mistakes. If they can complete their sets, and hold on to the ball – they go on to win the game comfortably.
For Bulldogs fans, it’s another season is misery. Only two wins with two weeks to go, and no improvement in sight.
TIP: Rabbitohs 13+
FRIDAY: North Queensland Cowboys V Penrith Panthers – Queensland Country Bank Stadium – 20.00NZT
With a win here, the Panthers can secure the 2020 Minor Premiership. They will be wanting to make sure they do that.
North Queensland’s poor season has had a few glimpses of hope, but it’s all about 2021 for them.
However, they have enough talent in their side to surprise this Panthers side.
Penrith’s resilience has been nothing short of impressive this year, and with the rich vein of form they are in, they should get this result comfortably.
TIP: Panthers 1-12
I’ve seen nothing from the Broncos to tell me things will change this week, and the Eels have plenty of room for improvement in them, and that needs to be on display this week.
There have been a lot of questions surrounding Parramatta’s form of late, and it’s their chance to put those to bed with a dominant performance.
The Broncos just have to do their best to survive without further injuries.
TIP: Eels 13+
SATURDAY: Manly Warringah Sea Eagles V Gold Coast Titans – Lottoland – 17.00NZT
Three wins in a row for the Titans has been their biggest winning streak in three years, and they have plenty of faith amongst themselves to win this one too.
Manly’s season of horror is almost done, and their makeshift backline continues to change every week.
What I like about the Titans over the last five weeks is that they’ve been playing consistently. Something their fans haven’t seen in a long time.
If they can continue to dominate the middle of the park, then they will bully Manly off their home field.
TIP: Titans 1-12
– Melbourne Storm V Wests Tigers – Sunshine Coast Stadium – 19.30NZT
Melbourne really make rugby league look effortless. Despite trailing early last week, they still made light work of it.
The Tigers slow start was terrible, and cost them the game. If they can focus on making it through the first ten minutes of the game 0-0, they can take that as a small win, and push on from there.
I don’t see the Storm losing this game, and that’s because they are always a competitive side, and always know how to win.
The Tigers look to finish the season in ninth position once again, which is always a good laugh.
TIP: Storm 13+
– Sydney Roosters V Cronulla Sharks – Sydney Cricket Ground – 21.30NZT
The Roosters are really going to win another premiership this year aren’t they?
Just an exceptional side in undeniable form, they continue to put points on the board with ease.
The Sharks really had to work hard last week to get the victory, and will have to work even harder this week.
I see the Roosters grinding the first forty, and cruising in the second half, but the Sharks will be determined not to finish eighth.
TIP: Roosters 1-12
SUNDAY: Canberra Raiders V New Zealand Warriors – GIO Stadium 16.00NZT
The Warriors lose the last of their loan players, and are just able to name seventeen players this week against the Raiders side who will no doubt put them to the sword.
The Raiders did get upset by the Warriors in the last round of 2019 at home, so they’ll be more than aware of the threat the Warriors pose.
The green machine will keep on chugging through this week, they’ve been so impressive in the last two months.
Warriors get another debutante this year, with Tom Ale coming off the bench.
TIP: Raiders 13+
– Newcastle Knights V Saint George Illawarra Dragons – McDonald Jones Stadium – 18.05NZT
With the Dragons season rolling to the finish line with a broken axle and two flat tyres, the Knights will want to head in to the finals with two wins from their last two games.
After resting a few stars last week, they will be rearing to go and get the result over the Red V.
The Dragons have been their own worst enemy at times, but there’s pride and a 2021 jersey to play for to catch the eye of their new coach.
The Knights should get this done if they want to prove their worth in the finals this year.
TIP: Knights 1-12
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