NRL Round 16 Previews and Betting Tips

The following are previews with betting tips for Round 16 of the 2021 NRL season.

Compare NRL bookmaker odds
View the NRL form guide
View NRL betting promotions (not available to NSW & WA)



Roosters v Storm

Thursday, July 1, 7:50pm AEST
McDonald Jones Stadium


A blockbuster clash between the Roosters and Melbourne will kick off the NRL premiership race once again after a competition-wide bye which should have both these teams feeling fresh at one of the most critical stages of their respective seasons. The Roosters will be looking for a big performanced, having yet to overcome a top-four side this year – particularly after a humbling 38-12 loss  to Penrith. Conversely, Melbourne are backing up from a massive 66-16 – a result which catapulted the Victorian club to the top of the competition ladder on points-differential.

The Roosters will welcome Sam Walker and Sitili Tupouniua’s return from injury at halfback and second-row respectively. Angus Crichton and James Tedesco will also return from Origin II. For the Storm, Origin trio Josh Addo-Carr, Christian Welch and Felise Kaufusi have been named to back up but could be late withdrawals. Kenneath and Jesse Bromwich will also return from injury at prop and second-row respectively in an otherwise unchanged squad.
Given the Roosters difficulties against the competition’s top teams, the Storm should go into this contest as heavy favourites. While Trent Robinson’s troops possess plenty of skill and class to challenge the Storm, expect Melbourne to win this contest through their brutal ruck play.

Betting Tip: Roosters +12.5 @ $1.91 (Playup)



Warriors v Dragons

Friday, July 2, 6:00pm AEST
Central Coast Stadium


The Warriors conceded a gritty loss to an improved Knights outfit in their last match in a frustrating result for the Kiwi club, who are now looking to avoid their fourth consecutive loss. They will face a Dragons outfit who posted an impressive victory over the Raiders in what fans will hope is a major turning point in their season.

The Warriors will be boosted by mid-season recruits Chad Townsend and Dallin Watene-Zelezniak at halfback and on the wing respectively – handy cover for the absence of the injured Reece Walsh. Wayde Egan and Edward Kosi will also join the starting side at hooker and on the wing respectively with Bunty Afoa also returning on the bench. For the Dragons, Matt Dufty will return at fullback at the expense of exciting youngster Tyrell Sloan, with Gerard Beale pushed out to the wing to cover the suspended Mikaele Ravalawa. Josh McGuire and Tyrell Fuimaono will also return on the bench with Origin players Tariq Sims, Ben Hunt and Andrew McCullough all named to back-up from Origin II.
Given their massive injury toll this year, the acquisition of Townsend and Watene-Zelezniak is a huge coup for the Warriors. While the Dragons look to be improving, expect the Kiwis to come out on top.

Betting Tip: Warriors -2.5 @ $1.95 (Bet365)



Panthers v Eels

Friday, July 2, 7:55pm AEST
Bluebet Stadium

Friday night will bring a massive blockbuster clash between the Panthers and Eels with both teams in prime position for a top-four finish and looking to start their run into the finals series. Penrith were impressive in a 38-12 win over the Roosters in their last match, while the Eels were equally dominant in a 26-point win over Canterbury.
Penrith have been dealt a huge blow with star halfback Nathan Cleary facing an extended stint on the sidelines after suffering a shoulder injury in Origin II. Matt Burton will shift to the halves as cover, with Brent Naden set to join the wing to cover the injured Dylan Edwards. Viliame Kikau will make his injury return in the second-row with the remainder of the Panthers’ Origin stars also named to return. For the Eels, Maika Sivo will return on the wing from suspension, with Oregon Kaufusi and Bryce Cartwright set to join the bench in an otherwise unchanged squad.
While the loss of Cleary is a huge blow, Matt Burton shapes as a handy replacement with his classy long-kicking game. This match could go either way but expect the Panthers to adjust to Cleary’s absence just enough to get the points.

Betting Tip: Panthers -4.5 @ $1.92 (Unibet)



Bulldogs v Sea Eagles

Saturday, July 3, 3:00pm AEST
Bankwest Stadium

Sea Eagles
Manly produced a stunning second-half comeback against the Titans last week, scoring eight tries to beat the Titans in an impressive 56-24 result. They will face a struggling Bulldogs outfit who were fundamentally outclassed by the Eels, a particularly disappointing result given they lead the scoreboard heading into half-time.
Manly have named an unchanged squad heading into this clash, while the Bulldogs have been forced into mass changes after a covid-protocol breach that will see Dylan Napa, Aaron Schoupp, Brandon Wakeham, Sione Katoa and Corey Waddell unavailable for selection. Corey Allan, and Kyle Flanagan will return on the wing and five-eighth respectively, with debutant Falakiko Manu also named at centre. Joe Stimson will also return on the bench alongside debutants Bailey Biondi-Odo and Christopher Patolo.
Given the Bulldogs covid woes and form this year, Manly will enter this match as firm favourites and the northern beaches club will be eager to bank premiership points in a bid to break into the top-four. Sea Eagles to get the points.

Betting Tip: Sea Eagles -25.5 @ $1.90 (Bluebet)



Raiders v Titans

Saturday, July 3, 5:30pm AEST
GIO Stadium

The Titans produced a woeful loss against Manly last week in a terrible second-half performance that saw them concede nine tries to lose the game 56-24. They will face a struggling Raiders squad whose season is in the balance after a disappointing, albeit narrow loss to the Dragons. Canberra are sitting one win outside the top-eight and Ricky Stuart’s troops are running out of time to turn their season around.
AJ Brimson will return at fullback for the Titans in a huge boost, alongside Corey Thompson on the wing. Kevin Proctor will return in the second-row from suspension with Sam Lisone and Beau Fermor also joining the bench. The Titans’ Maroons trio of Fifita, Fa’asuamaleaui and Fotuaika have all been named to back-up from Origin II. For the Raiders, Jarrod Croker will return at centre in a huge boost to an otherwise unchanged squad.
The Titans will be desperate to fix their fumbling defensive structures, although they were missing a number of key players in their last game. Expect a big response from this desperate Raiders outfit with Ricky Stuart’s squad to get the points.

Betting Tip: Raiders -6.5 @ $1.95 (Playup, Bluebet)



Knights v Cowboys

Saturday, July 3, 7:35pm AEST
McDonald Jones Stadium

Newcastle produced a gritty win over the Warriors in their last game, avoiding their third consecutive loss in a crucial result for the club at a critical stage of their season. They will face their finals competition in the Cowboys this week, with both clubs sitting just outside the top-eight, expect this to be a desperate encounter – particularly after the Cowboys’ heart-breaking two-point loss to the Sharks in round 15.
Kalyn Ponga will return at fullback for the Knights in a massive boost, pushing Kurt Mann to the centres in an otherwise unchanged squad. Daniel Saifiti has also been named to back-up from Origin II at prop. Meanwhile, North Queensland have named an unchanged squad.
With spots in the top-eight sure to be hotly contested this season, this game could have major ramifications on the make-up of the finals series. Newcastle will have the luxury of fielding their preferred spine in a huge boost for the club after the return of Kalyn Ponga. North Queensland have suffered some serious disruption due to covid restrictions, with coach Todd Payten forced to isolate from the club for two-weeks. Expect the Queenslanders’ disrupted preparation to hand the Knights the win.

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



Broncos v Sharks

Sunday, July 4, 2:00pm AEST
Suncorp Stadium

Brisbane were woeful against the Rabbitohs in a 46-0 loss, albeit after losing a number of players throughout the game. The Broncos will now face a massive challenge against an in-form Sharks squad who have won their last four consecutive games, including a wonderful victory over the Cowboys in their last game in which they staved-off a spirited comeback by the Queenslanders.
Brisbane will be boosted by the return of star centre Kotoni Staggs from a long-term knee injury with Jamayne Isaako and Corey Oates set to return on the wing. Keenan Palasia will replace the injured John Asiata on the bench, while Brodie Croft will come into the halves as cover for the injured Karmichael Hunt. Meanwhile, the Sharks have named an unchanged line-up.
Cronulla will enter this match as firm favourites, but should be wary of a Broncos squad desperate to end their season on a positive note and boosted by the news of Kurt Capewell’s signing for the ’22 season. Expect the experience in this Cronulla squad to prove the difference. Sharks to get the win.

Betting Tip: Sharks -9.5 @ $1.91 (Bet365)



Tigers v Rabbitohs

Sunday, July 4, 4:05pm AEST
Leichhardt Oval

Wests’ produced a devastating 66-16 loss to a red-hot Melbourne Storm outfit last week in concerning signs for the joint-venture club. They will face a huge test against an in-form Rabbitohs outfit who were dominant in a powerful 46-0 victory over the hapless Broncos in their last game.
Wests’ mentor Michael Maguire has resisted making wholesale changes to his team as Adam Doueihi is set to return from injury at centre with Thomas Mikaele the new face on the bench in an otherwise unchanged squad. For the Rabbitohs, Benji Marshall and Liam Knight will return on the bench with the club’s Origin players – Latrell Mitchell, Damien Cook, Jai Arrow, Dane Gagai and Cameron Murray – all named to back-up.
Michael Maguire will be looking for a huge turnaround from his troops after they were embarrassed by Melbourne last week. Expect them to struggle to stifle Souths’ momentum with the Rabbitohs to get the win.

Betting Tip: Rabbitohs -20.5 @ $1.95 (Bet365)


Best Bets

Panthers -4.5 @ $1.92 (Unibet)

Raiders -6.5 @ $1.95 (Playup, Bluebet)


Share this:


Post Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.