The following are previews with betting tips for Round 6 of the 2022 NRL season. Best bets for the round are also provided.
Raiders v Cowboys
Thursday, April 14, 7:50pm AEST
The Cowboys suffered a heart-breaking field-goal loss to the Warriors last week in extra-time but despite losing the game, Todd Payten’s squad look to be developing nicely. They will face a Raiders outfit who were brave in defeat against the Melbourne Storm as the Canberra club’s struggle to cover the absence of Josh Hodgson and Jamal Fogarty continues.
North Queensland will be missing Griffin Neame and Jamayne Taunoa-Brown to concussion but welcome Coen Hess back from injury in the front row with Connelly Lemuelu set to join the bench. For the Raiders, Xavier Savage will replace Matt Frawley on the bench in Ricky Stuart’s only change.
Canberra are clearly still adjusting to the long-term absence of both Hodgson and Fogarty, who provide enormous experience and composure to the team. North Queensland will be looking to tighten their discipline after some sloppy periods cost them victory over the Warriors. Canberra fans will be frustrated at their team’s inability to build pressure in attack and expect their opposition to focus on the field-position battle off the back of their in-form halves pairing of Dearden and Townsend. This match could go either way but expect the class and ruck dominance of this Raiders outfit to prove the difference.
Betting Tip: Raiders -4.5 @ $1.95 (Bet365)
Rabbitohs v Bulldogs
Friday, April 15, 4:00pm AEST
Betting Tip: Bulldogs +10.5 @ $1.91 (Bet365)
Panthers v Broncos
Friday, April 15, 7:55pm AEST
Brisbane produced an improved performance against the Roosters after a woeful showing against the Warriors in round four. Despite a promising defensive effort that saw the club keep the tri-colours scoreless in the opening half, the Broncos will need to find something special to compete with Penrith. The Panthers enjoyed a comfortable victory over Canterbury, extending their winning streak as the only undefeated team this season.
Brisbane will miss Payne Haas due to an off-field suspension in a massive blow with Corey Jensen set to shift to prop and Rhys Kennedy joining the bench. Meanwhile, the Panthers have named an unchanged squad.
After some close encounters last season, Penrith should be wary of a Broncos outfit whose kicking has improved drastically with Adam Reynolds’ boot. Particularly with the absence of Haas, Flegler and Carrigan expect the Brisbane’s middles to struggle to compete through the ruck against this brutal Panthers middle-rotation. Penrith to get the win.
Betting Tip: Broncos +23.5 @ $1.90 (Bluebet)
Sea Eagles v Titans
Saturday, April 16, 5:30pm AEST
Manly proved they can be a force without Tom Trbojevic last week after a dominant 30-6 win over Newcastle has the Sea Eagles’ season back on track. They will face an inconsistent Eels outfit who suffered a narrow loss to a red-hot Parramatta squad but with all their points coming in the last half-hour of play, Justin Holbrook’s troops will be looking for an 80-minute performance this week.
Des Hasler has named only one change for his Manly squad with Tolutau Koula replacing Morgan Harper at centre due to covid. For the Titans, Brian Kelly’s return at centre will push Phillip Sami to the wing at the expense of Corey Thompson with Sam Lisone also joining the bench.
Manly’s game-plan is designed around their big-game players and the likes of Daly Cherry-Evans, Kieran Foran and Jake Trbojevic have been enormous in the absence of his superstar brother Tom. The Gold Coast will struggle to compete with the competition’s best until they can perform consistently across 80 minutes. Manly to get the win.
Betting Tip: Sea Eagles -4.5 @ $1.95 (Bluebet)
Storm v Sharks
Saturday, April 16, 7:35pm AEST
This Saturday night will bring a mouth watering top-four clash in the next chapter in the Storm-Sharks rivalry. Melbourne last produced a dominant performance against the Raiders as the Victorian club look to notch their third consecutive win, while Cronulla were equally impressive in a 30-4 rout of the Tigers.
Melbourne mentor Craig Bellamy has named Tyran Wishart on the bench at the expense of Alec MacDonald in his only team changes. Meanwhile, the Sharks have similarly named only one change with Aiden Tolman displacing Royce Hunt on the interchange.
The usual passion between these two teams will certainly be amplified in Dale Finucane and Nicho Hynes’ first match against their former club. While the Storm have largely emulated their success of recent seasons this year, Cronulla have surged into elite form this season off the back of their new recruits and coach Craig Fitzgibbon. This match could go either way but expect the cohesion and big-game experience within this Storm squad to prove the difference.
Betting Tip: Sharks +7.5 @ $1.93 (Winnersbet)
Roosters v Warriors
Sunday, April 17, 2:00pm AEST
The Warriors enjoyed a scintillating field-goal victory in extra time over an improved North Queensland outfit as the Kiwi club continue their upwards trajectory of improvement. They will face a Roosters outfit who managed a narrow victory over Brisbane in a stunning second-half blitz after the tri-colours were kept scoreless in the opening half.
The Warriors will replace Jack Murchie with Eliesa Katoa on the bench, with Dallin Watene-Zelezniak also joining the wing for the suspended Marcelo Montoya. For the Roosters, Sio Siua Taukeiaho will return on the bench, with Sam Verrils also set to return from injury in a massive boost for the tri-colours.
The Warriors are developing deadly attacking combinations between their new-look spine as the club face their first major test this year against an elite team. While the Kiwis certainly have the points in them to win this game, expect the superior defensive structures of Trent Robinson’s team to get them the result.
Betting Tip: Warriors +14.5 @ $1.95 (Winnersbet)
Dragons v Knights
Sunday, April 17, 4:05pm AEST
Newcastle’s promising start to the season has been hampered by a devastating injury toll and now facing their fourth consecutive defeat the Knights will be desperate to bank premiership points for their finals campaign. Their opposition in St George have struggled with their new look squad, winning only one game this year after enormous disruption to their spine has coach Anthony Griffin under pressure.
Edrick Lee will make his long-awaited return on the wing in place of the injured Dominic Young, with David Klemmer also set to return at prop in a massive boost. St George will welcome some vital reinforcements of their own with Josh McGuire and George Burgess also set to join the bench in an otherwise unchanged squad.
The Dragons’ promising form in the opening rounds against the Warriors and Penrith was based on bruising defense and fantastic line-speed. Griffin will be hoping the return of hard-heads Josh McGuire and George Burgess will inject some aggression into his forward rotation. Newcastle will be desperate for a win after a difficult period, although their recent losses have come against Penrith, Manly and Cronulla. Expect a big response from this injury-hit Newcastle outfit off the back of a 10 day turnaround with the Dragons’ struggles to continue. Knights to get the win.
Betting Tip: Knights +3.5 @ $1.90 (Bluebet)
Eels v Tigers
Monday, April 18, 4:00pm AEST
The Eels withstood a second-half blitz from the Titans to record a narrow victory last week with the Parramatta club’s form putting them in the box-seat for a top-four berth. They will face an under-performing Tigers outfit who were dominated by Cronulla last week with pressure mounting on coach Michael Maguire given his club’s winless start to the season.
The Eels’ back-line injury crisis continues with makeshift winger Waqa Blake sidelined for an extended period. Centre Will Penisini will revert to the wing as Marata Niukore comes in as cover. Junior Paulo will miss one game with suspension as Shaun Lane returns in the second-row in an otherwise unchanged squad. Meanwhile, Wests have made a host of changes in a bid to kickstart his club with Jackson Hastings returning at halfback, pushing Luke brooks to five-eighth. Oliver Gildart, Ken Maumalo, Jacob Liddle and Tyrone Peachey have all been dropped with Daine Laurie to make his injury return at fullback alongside James Roberts and Starford To’a at centre and wing respectively.
Wests looked an improved outfit with Jackson Hastings leading their playmaking and suffered for his absence in recent weeks. Coach Michael Maguire will be hoping his return alongside a number of other changes relieves the massive pressure the embattled coach is under. While they are missing key players, the class within this Parramatta line-up should prove too much for the Tigers.
Betting Tip: Tigers +20.5 @ $1.97 (Bet365)
Knights +3.5 @ $1.90 (Bluebet)