NRL Round 8 Previews and Betting Tips

The following are previews with betting tips for Round 8 of the 2023 NRL season. Best bets for the round are also provided.

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Rabbitohs v Panthers

Thursday, April 20, 7:50pm AEST
Stadium Australia

Form guide for Rabbitohs vs Panthers


Souths overcame a shaky start to produce a powerful victory over the Dolphins last week, but the club will now face a massive challenge to find their third consecutive win over the reigning premiers. The Panthers outlasted the resurgent Knights for a scintillating field-goal victory in extra time in a brave performance as the club looks to find form after an indifferent start to their season.

Souths’ torrid injury toll continues to mount with star second-rower and NSW hopeful Keon Koloamatangi ruled out for over a month with an ankle injury. Michael Chee Kam will return in the second-row for the Rabbitohs, with Izaac Tu’itupou Thompson also set to return from injury, displacing Taane Milne on the wing. Meanwhile, Liam Martin’s injury return was cut short last week as he battles hamstring issues as Scott Sorensen shifts back to the second-row with Lindsay Smith joining the bench in an otherwise unchanged line-up.

With Koloamatangi’s absence, Souths will be missing five top-line forwards and their vulnerability through the ruck was plain to see last week as they struggled to match the Dolphins’ physicality in the opening half, despite running away with the game in the second-stanza. Penrith last produced a six-point victory over Souths in round two, and while the playmaking class within their line-up will certainly give the reigning premiers pause, expect them to dominate the ruck for the win.

Betting Tip: Panthers -5.5 @ $1.90 (Colossalbet



Eels v Broncos

Friday, April 21, 8pm AEST
TIO Stadium

Form guide for Eels vs Broncos


Brisbane bounced back from a poor loss to the Raiders in round six with a powerful win over the Titans. They will face a massive test against an in-form Eels outfit gunning for their third consecutive win after a massive 30-4 win over Canterbury. It was a 53-6 drubbing at the hands of Parramatta late last season that ultimately buried the Broncos’ finals aspirations so expect an intense physical contest between these rival clubs.

Parramatta will welcome Josh Hodgson’s return at hooker, with Brendan Hands relegated to the bench at the expense of Makahesi Makatoa in an otherwise unchanged squad. Meanwhile, Brisbane have similarly made only two changes with stars Thomas Flegler and Corey Oates returning at prop and wing respectively in a huge boost.

While Brisbane have enjoyed a great start to the year, a field-goal victory over Penrith in round one is their only victory over a current top-four team and they will need to take their game to another level against a Parramatta outfit brimming with big-game experience. Expect a fiery clash full of physicality but the experience within this Eels outfit should get them over the line.

Betting Tip: Eels H2H @ $2.15 (Boombet



Bulldogs v Sharks

Saturday, April 22, 5:30pm AEST
Stadium Australia

Form guide for Bulldogs vs Sharks


Canterbury were demolished 30-4 by a dominant Eels outfit last week, and in the face of a horror injury toll their season will get no easier coming up against an in-form Cronulla squad backing-up from an impressive 10-point win over the Roosters.

Canterbury will replace the injured Jacob Kiraz with Braidon Burns on the wing in an otherwise unchanged squad. Boom rookie Karl Oloapu has been named at 18th man and continues to put enormous pressure on the Bulldogs’ struggling halves. Meanwhile, the Sharks have named an unchanged squad.

Cronulla have been well below their best this season but look to be settling as superstar Nicho Hynes moves from strength to strength after his return from injury a few weeks ago. Canterbury are missing almost a third of their top-30 squad to injury and should struggle against the cohesion combinations of a Sharks outfit who have played many games together. Cronulla to get the win.

Betting Tip: Sharks -14.5 @ $1.91 (bet365)



Cowboys v Knights

Saturday, April 22, 7:35pm AEST
Queensland Country Bank Stadium

Form guide for Cowboys vs Knights

Newcastle’s resurgence was blunted by a brutal field-goal loss to the reigning premiers in extra-time last week, but the Knights lost no fans after producing a courageous performance. Newcastle will represent a huge challenge for a struggling North Queensland outfit who were poor in their last-start loss to the improved Warriors and with the Cowboys recording just two wins from seven games this year, pressure is mounting on the club to turn their season around.

The Knights will receive a massive boost with Kayln Ponga cleared to return from a serious concussion sustained in round two. The incumbent Queensland fullback will line-up at five-eighth, with Jacob Saifiti also returning on the bench in a massive boost. For the Cowboys, Jason Taumalolo is facing a significant stint on the sideline with a knee injury in a massive blow to their struggling middle rotation. Reuben Cotter will shift to lock, with Jordan McLean’s return from injury at prop well-timed in an otherwise unchanged squad.

Persistent disruptions to their team have not allowed the Cowboys to form coherent combinations and the impact on their football is clear to see. Expect a fired-up Newcastle outfit to prove too much for the struggling Queensland club.

Betting Tip: Knights H2H @ $2.30 (Colossalbet



Dolphins v Titans

Sunday, April 23, 2pm AEST
Suncorp Stadium

Form guide for Dolphins vs Titans


The Dolphins were brave in defeat to an in-form Rabbitohs outfit last week, producing a wonderful start to the game before being run-down by Souths’ potent attacking game. They will face Queensland rivals in the Titans, with the Gold Coast club backing up from a poor last-start loss to Brisbane after conceding four tries in just over 15 minutes in a disappointing second-half effort.

Felise Kaufusi will return from suspension for the Dolphins, replacing the suspended Kenny Bromwich in the second-row in an otherwise unchanged line-up. Meanwhile, the Titans have dropped Aaron Schoupp with Phillip Sami shifting to centre and Jojo Fifita coming onto the wing. Thomas Mikaele and Klese Haas will also join the bench in an otherwise unchanged squad.

Despite a number of injury disruptions, the Dolphins have cultivated a fantastic next-man-up mentality. While the Titans squad have huge talent, the inexperience in their spine and play-making combinations impact their ability to perform across 80 minutes. Expect the Dolphins to outlast their opposition to get the win.

Betting Tip: Dolphins -2.5 @ $1.96 (Boombet



Tigers v Sea Eagles

Sunday, April 23, 4:05pm AEST
Campbelltown Sports Stadium

Form guide for Tigers vs Sea Eagles

Sea Eagles

Manly arrested any thought of a form slump with a powerful performance over the Storm last week, powering to a 10-point victory in a tough contest. They will face the last-placed Tigers. Winless so far this season, Wests showed some signs of improvement in a narrow last start loss to Parramatta in round six and should be fresh coming off a bye last week.

Manly will welcome Josh Schuster and Reuben Garrick back from injury in a welcome boost with Samuela Fainu also named to make his NRL debut off the interchange in Anthony Seibold’s only changes. For the Tigers, their woeful start to the season was compounded by a devastating season-ending injury to Adam Doueihi. Exciting rookie Jahream Bula is set for his NRL debut at fullback as cover, pushing Charlie Staines to the wing with Tommy Talau and Dane Laurie also joining the bench.

While Manly will enter this match as firm favourites, they have a terrible away-record and face a daunting trip to the Tigers’ homeground in Campbelltown. Expect a fired-up Tigers squad playing in front of their home-fans but they will struggle to match Manly’s nerve across 80 minutes. Sea Eagles to get the win.

Betting Tip: Sea Eagles -10.5 @1.92 (Picklebet)



Roosters v Dragons

Tuesday, April 25, 4pm AEST
Allianz Stadium

Form guide for Roosters vs Dragons

The Roosters have been poor so far this year by the club’s high-standards, albeit in the face of a significant injury toll. Trent Robinson’s troops are backing up from tough consecutive losses to the Storm and Sharks and the veteran coach has made some bold selection decisions in a bid to re-ignite their season. They will face a struggling St George team who were outmuscled in a tough loss to the Raiders in round seven.

Trent Robinson has made a big call in dropping star halfback Sam Walker, with Joey Manu shifting to five-eighth and Luke Keary pushing to halfback. Paul Momirovski will join the centres while Angus Crichton and Sitili Tupouniua will make their long-awaited return from lengthy absences in a massive boost for the Roosters. Meanwhile, St George have named only one change with Ben Murdoch-Masila coming into the second-row for the injured Jaydn Su’a.

St George have shown plenty of physicality but lack the polish to match the competition’s elite clubs. Expect a big response from the Roosters after their spine reshuffle as the club moves to avoid their third consecutive loss. Roosters to get the win.

Betting Tip: Dragons +13.5 @ $1.90 (Playup



Storm v Warriors

Tuesday, April 25, 7pm AEST

Form guide for Storm vs Warriors


Melbourne were uncharacteristically poor last week after Manly brought a physicality that the Victorian club struggled to answer. They should expect no easier task against an uncompromising Warriors squad, who were impressive in a gritty last-start win over the Cowboys.

Melbourne’s next-man-up mentality will be put to the test again this week, with returning prop Nelson Asofa-Solomona set to cover the suspended Tui Kamikamica. Nick Meaney will also return from a concussion at fullback in an otherwise unchanged squad. The Warriors only change comes with Marata Niukore returning from suspension in the second-row.

The Warriors finally look to be finding the composure and consistency to match their immense talent under rookie coach Andrew Webster. The Kiwi outfit is easily capable of replicating the physicality that put Melbourne off last week, but with the Storm coming off a poor loss – expect a massive response from Craig Bellamy’s troops in front of their home-fans. Storm to get the points.

Betting Tip: Warriors +11.5 @ $1.96 (Boombet


Best Bet

Dolphins -2.5 @ $1.96 (Boombet)


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