NRL Round 23 Previews and Tips

NRL Round 23 Previews and Betting Tips



Bulldogs v Sea Eagles

Thu 11 Aug, 7:50PM, ANZ Stadium

Sea Eagles

The Canterbury Bankstown Bulldogs will take on the Manly Warringah Sea Eagles this Thursday night after both teams produced disappointing performances last week which could derail each club’s season. Manly went down against the Eels after initially leading by one point in the dying stages of the game with a controversial penalty handing the Parramatta club a 10-9 victory. Bulldogs fans will be happy with their team’s win over the Knights last week, however the Dogs’ inability to put the struggling Newcastle outfit to the sword does not bode well for Canterbury’s premiership credentials.

Jaime Lyon will return at five-eighth for the Sea Eagles, with Dylan Walker shifting to the centres and Blake Leary out of the side. The Bulldogs have named an unchanged squad for the clash with Kerrod Holland and Lloyd Perrett coming onto an extended bench.

The Bulldogs will go into the match as heavy favourites but it will be interesting to see the reaction of Manly’s outfit to their loss last week which all but ruled the joint-venture club out of finals actions. Expect the ‘Dogs to get the points as they look to secure a top four position, but don’t be surprised if a proud Sea Eagles cause an upset.

Betting Tip: Bulldogs -6.0 @ $1.90 (Sportsbet)



Broncos v Eels

Fri 12 Aug, 7:50PM, Suncorp Stadium


The Brisbane Broncos will take on the Parramatta Eels this Friday night after last week’s dour win over the Dragons stopped the bleeding for the struggling Queensland club. Touted as premiership favourites earlier in the season, Brisbane have been in free-fall over the last few months but Brisbane faithful will be hopeful their team can return to their damaging best as they desperately seek a top four berth and momentum heading into the finals.

The Eels will welcome back David Gower on the bench with Rory O’Brien coming in as 18th man, while the Broncos have elected to make no changes to their side from last week.

The Eels once again showed their character with an impressive win over the Sea Eagles last week, despite being ruled out of finals contention. They will need to muster their reserves as they travel north to take on the Broncos at their home of Suncorp Stadium with the Broncos desperately looking to restore their damaged confidence. Brisbane will go in as heavy favourites and while you should expect them to get the points, don’t be surprised if the Eels cause an upset.

Betting Tip: Eels +12.5 @ $1.94 (Luxbet)



Tigers v Titans

Sat 13 Aug, 3:00PM, Campbelltown Stadium


The Gold Coast Titans will play the Wests Tigers this Saturday afternoon with both teams producing performances which would have both disappointed and elevated each club’s fan base respectively. The Tigers were extremely impressive against the Cowboys with a convincing victory and could very well make their way into the top eight. The Titans face a more uphill battle after Jarryd Hayne’s NRL return was soured by a loss to the Warriors. 

The Tigers have elected to go into the match unchanged, while the Titans will shift superstar Jarryd Hayne to the starting side at five eighth. Ryan Simpkins and Nathan Friend will also join an extended bench for the Gold Coast club. 

It should be a tight contest between two clubs battling for a finals berth, but the Tigers will go into the match as narrow favourites after their performance last week. At this stage of the season there are no excuses for poor form, and it will be a battle of desire between two teams who were written off from the finals earlier in the year. It is a tough one to call but expect the Tigers to get the points. 

Betting Tip: Tigers Head to Head @ $1.92 (Betfair)



Warriors v Rabbitohs

Sat 13 Aug, 5:30PM, Mt Smart Stadium


The New Zealand Warriors will host the South Sydney Rabbitohs this Saturday evening after both teams produced very impressive results last week. A struggling Rabbitohs squad looked to turn a new leaf last round after a narrow field-goal loss against the Storm. Souths performed extremely well relative to their recent form slump and expect pride within the Rabbitohs’ camp to spurn them to another good performance. 

The Rabbitohs have made no changes from their team last week, while the Warriors have included Bunty Afoa on an extended bench as 18th man in the only change for the club. 

Against the Titans last week, the Warriors elevated themselves to 8th on the NRL ladder but with competition from the Tigers and Titans the New Zealand club will need to keep winning to keep their finals spot. The Warriors are very capable of threatening for the premiership even outside the top four, having played in a grand final in 2011 from 6th position. With the Rabbitohs playing for pride and the Warriors playing to consolidate their finals berth, the New Zealand club will go into the match as favourites and expect the Kiwis to get the win. 

Betting Tip: Warriors -8.5 @ $1.94 (Luxbet)



Dragons v Sharks

Sat 13 Aug, 7:30PM, Jubilee Oval


The St George Illawarra Dragons will take on the Cronulla Sharks this Saturday night after the Shire club conceded their first loss since round three of the 2016 season against the Raiders. It was an emphatic statement from the Raiders and a concern for Sharks fans who will worry their team has peaked too early during the season, but the Cronulla club will look to recover against a struggling Dragons outfit. 

Both teams will welcome back reinforcements with Joseph Paulo, Michael Ennis and Ricky Leutele all set to return for the Sharks, while the Dragons will welcome back Joel Thompson, Tyson Frizell and Josh Dugan in a massive boost for their team. 

The Sharks will go into the contest as heavy favourites and barring a special performance from the Dragons the former competition leaders should get the points. The return of Thompson and Frizell in the back-row and Dugan at fullback is a massive boon for the Dragons, but expect the Sharks to be sharp in the lead in to the finals. Cronulla to get the points. 

Betting Tip: Total Match Points Over 38.0 @ $1.90 (Palmerbet)



Knights v Panthers

Sun 14 Aug, 2:00PM, Hunter Stadium


The Newcastle Knights will host the Penrith Panthers this Sunday afternoon with the Panthers dominating the Roosters in a performance that elevated them to 7th on the NRL competition ladder. It was a convincing statement from the young Panthers outfit, but they will need to keep on winning to secure their tenuous finals position and will be confident they can do so against the struggling Knights. 

The Panthers will go into the match unchanged, while the Knights have named Mitchell Barnett and Tyler Randell in the back-row and at hooker respectively with Pat Mata’utia also joining an extended bench. 

The Panthers will go into this match as heavy favourites against the Knights, with the Newcastle club continuing to struggling this year.  Expect the Panthers to be well aware of their tenuous position on the ladder and the Penrith club should be motivated to produce a good performance. Boosted by team continuity and their big win over the Roosters last week, expect the Panthers to get the points. 

Betting Tip: Panthers -12.5 @ $1.90 (Palmerbet)



Roosters v Cowboys

Sun 14 Aug, 4:00PM, Allianz Stadium


The Sydney Roosters will play the North Queensland Cowboys this Sunday evening with the latter’s season on the line after a poor showing against the Tigers last week saw the Queensland club drop out of the top four. Suffering injuries to a number of key players in recent times, the Cowboys form has been a far cry from last year and club faithful will hope their team can pick up some confidence before the finals. 

Jarred Waerea-Hargreaves and Mitchell Pearce will both return in a massive boost for the Roosters, while injuries to Ben Hannant and Jake Granville will bring bring in Coen Hess, Ray Thompson and Kyle Feldt with Patrick Kaufusi joining an extended bench alongside Javid Bowen. 

The Cowboys will go into the match as favourites but with patchy form in recent times, the North Queensland club will be on high alert against the Roosters at a stage of the season where every win counts. The Roosters have underperformed this year but look to be getting back to the quality that saw them win three consecutive minor premierships so don’t be surprised if the Sydney club produced an upset but expect the Cowboys to come away with the win. 

Betting Tip: Total Match Points Over 43.5 @ $1.90 (Sportsbet)



Raiders v Storm

Mon 15 Aug, 7:00PM, GIO Stadium


Round 23 of the 2016 NRL competition will end with a bang with an explosive clash between the Canberra Raiders and Melbourne Storm on Monday night set to be a preview of finals action in September. Both teams impressed last week with the Raiders handing the Sharks their first loss since round 3 in a convincing win, while the Storm managed to hold out a fast finishing Rabbitohs with a field-goal victory. 

Both teams have elected to go into the match unchanged, which is good signs for both clubs heading into the finals as they look to settle on their preferred squads. 

The Storm will go into the match as convincing favourites but with both teams looking for their 7th consecutive win, this one could go either way. The Raiders have traditionally performed well at home and have a very good record against top teams this year, but expect the big-game experience of the Storm to be the difference.  Melbourne to get the points. 

Betting Tip: Storm -1.5 @ $1.90 (Bet365)


Best Bet

Panthers -12.5 @ $1.90 (Palmerbet)


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