NRL Round 4 Previews and Tips

NRL Round 4 Previews and Tips

Eels v Rabbitohs

Fri 27 Mar, 7:35pm, Pirtek Stadium

The Eels will have their shot at the defending premiers the South Sydney Rabbitohs this Friday night after a disappointing showing against the Warriors in the face of injuries to star winger Semi Radradra and centre Beau Champion. The Rabbitohs continue their winning streak heading into the fourth round of NRL in 2015 having easily beaten a dangerous Tigers outfit last week.

Rabbitohs coach Michael Maguire will be hoping his squad’s success won’t hinge on luck with injuries this year, as he loses premiership stars John Sutton and Dylan Walker to injury. Eels coach Brad Arthur will have similar concerns after a number of head knocks sustained by his team against the Warriors.


The depth of the Rabbitohs will continue to be tested against the Eels after they are now missing Premiership stars Kirisome Auva’a, Sam Burgess, Ben Teo, John Sutton and Dylan Walker, as recruits Tim Grant and Daryl Millard step into the breach. Brad Arthur will be hoping for some enthusiasm from his squad as they go into round four one for three after such a promising start against the Manly Sea Eagles. Expect an enthusiastic Eels outfit to go down to an ever classy Rabbitohs squad.

Ben’s Tips: Total Match Points over 40.5 @ $1.90 (Sportsbet)



Tigers v Bulldogs

Fri 27 Mar, 7:35pm, ANZ Stadium

This Friday night will see the Wests Tigers take on the Canterbury Bankstown Bulldogs after Des Hasler’s squad continued to impress after a good showing against the Sea Eagles last week. New Tigers coach Jason Taylor won’t be too unhappy with his inexperienced squad’s performance against a classy Rabbitohs outfit last week as he looks to continue the development of his exciting young roster.

It will be a battle of the big men as an explosive Tigers pack takes on Canterbury’s monster forward rotation and Des Hasler will be nervously awaiting the NRL’s announcement of a potential reduction in player interchanges, which is set to cause the giant forwards in the NRL to go extinct.


While the Tigers have been impressive this season, their inexperience will show against a Bulldogs side well versed in finals football. Canterbury look to be amongst the competition heavyweights this year as Brett Morris continues his miraculous form since his shift to fullback. Expect a hard-edged Bulldogs outfit to be too disciplined for an enthusiastic Tigers squad.

Ben’s Tips: Tigers +8.5 @ $1.93 (Pinnacle Sports)



Dragons v Sea Eagles

Sat 28 Mar, 7:30pm, WIN Stadium

Paul McGregor’s Dragons finally look to be finding form after their impressive come-from-behind victory over the Raiders last week as they head into Saturday night’s clash against the Manly Sea Eagles. Geoff Toovey will be relieved at the return of star duo Jamie Lyon and Kieran Foran after the Sea Eagles’ performance with the kicking-tee proved the difference against the Bulldogs.
Boom Dragons rookie Euan Aitken has again been named in the centres after an impressive debut, while Origin forward Trent Merrin has been named in the starting side for the first time this year.


With reinforcements inbound after their narrow loss to the Bulldogs last week, the Sea Eagles will be hard to beat as the club looks to put the controversy surrounding the departure of their star halves pairing behind them. While the Dragons were good against the Raiders last week, their woeful first half performance indicates that a lot of work needs to go into the game before they will be able to match it with the likes of the Sea Eagles.

Ben’s Tips: Sea Eagles -3.5 @ $1.92 (Pinnacle Sports)



Knights v Panthers

Sat 28 Mar, 3:00pm, Hunter Stadium

A high flying Newcastle Knights outfit will take on a similarly buoyant Panthers squad after the Knights have surprised their critics as they head into round four of NRL 2015 as one of the few unbeaten sides in the competition. Their first true test comes this Saturday though after relatively easy wins over lacklustre Warriors, Cowboys and Titans teams.

Panthers coach Ivan Cleary will be disappointed in his squad’s performance against Premiership heavyweights the Sydney Roosters last week as he looks to establish his Panthers outfit as one of the favourites in the competition.


While the Knights have surprised many with their enthusiasm and dangerous attack, the Panthers will be the first true test for them this year after playing their first three games of 2015 against quite poor opposition. The Panthers will be smarting after their loss to the Roosters so expect Ivan Cleary to have worked out the kinks and have them firing against the currently second placed Knights.

Ben’s Tips: Panthers -1.0 @ $2.03 (Pinnacle Sports)



Sharks v Titans

Sat 28 Mar, 5:30pm, Remondis Stadium

The Cronulla Sharks will come up against the Gold Coast Titans this Saturday evening as both clubs will be desperate to get their stuttering seasons underway with a win. Neil Henry will be thankful to have suspended forwards Beau Falloon, Greg Bird and Dave Taylor back as the two-week suspension of Ben Barba has caused a reshuffle of the Sharks squad that will see the Shane Flanagan field an extra forward on the field as ball-playing backrower Wade Graham moves to five-eighth.

Rookie-prodigy Kane Elgey will make his debut for the Titans after an injury to Daniel Mortimer, while the Sharks will also blood a gun rookie after naming Jack Bird on the bench.


While the Shark’s forward pack looks formidable, particularly with Wade Graham at five-eighth, the Cronulla club look short of an established playmaker after narrowly missing the signature of Daly Cherry-Evans to the Titans for the 2016 NRL season. The Titans are headed in the right direction and the recent return of their suspended trio of forwards along with the good form of Aidan Sezer should

Ben’s Tips: Titans +5.5 @ $1.98 (Pinnacle Sports)



Roosters v Raiders

Sun 29 Mar, 2:00pm, Allianz Stadium

The Sydney Roosters will line up against the Canberra Raiders this week after both sides came up with disappointing losses last week. The Raiders have proved their critics wrong after a fierce start to the season, and with the return of Jack Wighton from a fractured eye socket, their new-look spine again looks set to gel.

In similar good form, the Roosters have more or less established themselves as one of the competition heavyweights after dismissing premiership favourites the North Queensland Cowboys and the Penrith Panthers in successive weeks. Trent Robinson will be pleased by the form of many of his star players as former Origin winger Blake Ferguson and halves pairing James Maloney and Mitchell Pearce look to be replicating the form that saw them represent New South Wales.


The Roosters have well established themselves as one of the heavyweights in the competition and while Ricky Stuart looks to be making progress in our nation’s capital, some questions remain over an inexperienced Raiders squad’s ability to perform for the full eighty minutes. Expect a rampant Roosters outfit to take home the points.

Ben’s Tips: Total Match Points Over 44.0 @ $1.90 (Luxbet)



Warriors v Broncos

Sun 29 Mar, 12:00pm, Mt Smart Stadium

The New Zealand Warriors will take on the Brisbane Broncos this Sunday afternoon as both sides managed to recover from poor round one performances to win their next two games. Wayne Bennett’s persistent message to the Broncos’ fans has been patience for his young halves pairing, but Anthony Milford and Ben Hunt both starred in their win over the Broncos with Hunt in particular indicating he won’t be a one hit wonder after his breakout year last season.

There were concerning signs from the Warriors as they looked to be returning to their old, inconsistent ways after giving up a lead to the Knights in round one. The New Zealand club has bounced back, although they face a backline reshuffle following an injury to Sam Tomkins with boom rookie Tuimoala Lolohea is set to take the place of the English fullback.


While the Broncos have struggled to get a win at the Warriors’ home ground in recent times, expect the wind to change as the Broncos spine gelled for the first time in a slick attacking performance against the Cowboys. With Shaun Johnson still struggling to replicate the form that won him the golden boot, and the absence of Sam Tomkins, expect a Broncos outfit to outclass the Warriors in a high scoring affair.

Ben’s Tips: Total match points over 42.5 @ $1.90 (Centrebet)



Cowboys v Storm

Mon 30 Mar, 7:00pm, 1300Smiles Stadium

The North Queensland Cowboys will have undoubtedly done some soul searching after almost conceding fifty points against the Broncos last week as they head into a tough few weeks with games against the Storm and Panthers. While Cowboys coach Paul Green will be scratching his head over the poor form of his superstar squad, Storm coach Craig Bellamy will be happy with his squad’s progress as he looks to have finally found a permanent solution at five-eighth in Blake Green.

Paul Green’s wing combination will be replaced for the game against the Storm, with Matthew Wright and Antonio Winterstein stepping into the gap, while Craig Bellamy has named an unchanged squad from his side’s big win over the Sharks last week.


The Cowboys have dug themselves a very deep hole that will only get deeper if they can’t find a win in the next few weeks. With their recent form, Paul Green will be hoping Lachlan Coote’s return to fullback will have his spine gelling for the first time this year, while Craig Bellamy only needs more of the same from his dangerous Storm squad.

Ben’s Tips: Storm Head to Head @ $2.05 (Pinnacle Sports)



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