THE LONG HARD LOOK WITH MIKE WILSON
Newcastle Knights v Gold Coast Titans
Ausgrid Stadium, 2.00pm
Knights $1.29, Titans $3.65 (Centrebet)
Knights: Kurt Gidley (c), James McManus, Junior Sa’u, Keith Lulia, Akuila Uate, Ryan Stig, Jarrod Mullen, Evarn Tuimavave, Isaac De Gois, Antonio Kaufusi, Chris Houston, Neville Costigan, Joel Edwards. Interchange (from): Matt Hilder, Mark Taufua, Cameron Ciraldo, Zane Tetevano, Marvin Karawana
Titans: Jordan Rankin, Dominique Peyroux, William Zillman, Clinton Toopi, David Mead, Beau Henry, Scott Prince (c), Luke Bailey (c), Matt Srama, Anthony Laffranchi, Bodene Thompson, Mark Minichiello, Greg Bird. Interchange: Matt White, Brenton Lawrence, Luke O’Dwyer, Preston Campbell
Despite the Knight’s scratchy form throughout the season, they always make their games at Ausgrid Stadium more than a little difficult for their opposition. The Titans have pretty much found every game difficult so this one won’t be much better. They had the Cowboys in the palm of their hand last week and managed to concede two late tries and two competition points.
New boy Dominique Peyroux from the Cook Islands is set to make his debut for the Gold Coast side and it’s said that he has speed to burn. It would be great at some stage to see him in a foot race against Knights try scoring machine Akuila Uate.
Mike’s Best Bet: $102 on the Knights -7.5 @ $1.70 (Centrebet)
St George Illawarra Dragons v South Sydney Rabbitohs
WIN Stadium, 3.00pm
Dragons $1.17, Rabbitohs $5.15 (Centrebet)
Dragons: Darius Boyd, Brett Morris, Mark Gasnier, Matt Cooper (c), Jason Nightingale, Jamie Soward, Ben Hornby (c), Dan Hunt, Nathan Fien, Michael Weyman, Beau Scott, Ben Creagh, Matt Prior. Interchange (from): Adam Cuthbertson, Jon Green, Trent Merrin, Mitch Rein, Kyle Stanley
Rabbitohs: Rhys Wesser, Nathan Merritt, Dylan Farrell, Greg Inglis, Chris McQueen , John Sutton, Chris Sandow, Ben Ross, Issac Luke, Shannan McPherson, Jason Clark, Eddy Pettybourne, Michael Crocker (c). Interchange (from): Luke Burgess, David Tyrrell, Ben Lowe, Nathan Peats, Shaun Corrigan
It will be interesting to see what effect, if any, a reported flu outbreak will have on the Dragons with a few of their players reportedly suffering the winter bug.
The Dragons if anything could use a win today as a confidence boost having recorded only 3 wins from their past 9 games.
This is pretty much it for Souths. Win or start looking to next year. Michael Crocker returns to the side which will make a big difference. Prop Ben Ross said through the week how much of a positive difference Crocker makes with his talk and guidance when on the field. The forwards in general will need to have a big game if they Rabbitohs are going to make any headway.
Mike’s Best Bet: None
Starting Bank: $2000, Current Bank $2476.19
(Team lists sourced from nrl.com.au)