NRL 2 years ago

NRL Telstra Premiership: Round 13 Preview

  • NRL Telstra Premiership: Round 13 Preview

    SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 07: Team captains of the NRL finalist teams pose for a photo with Dave Smith, CEO of the NRL and Dave Good of Telstra during the 2015 NRL Finals series launch at Sydney Cricket Ground on September 7, 2015 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Brett Hemmings/Getty Images)

Post Origin it is hard to get a read on teams. Particularly because we don't really know will play and who wont.  And with open trades and player movements happening its tough to keep up.

Lets look at the match ups.

Raiders V Sea Eagles - Fri 03/06, 7.50p.m.

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Manly have looked better with Lyon at five-eighth in recent weeks.  And they have Stewart back in the No 1. Walker without any Origin time wont be affected.  Canberra are hot a cold this season but have firmed in recent weeks. Their goal will be to put in a full 80 minutes.  Papalii is pushing to back up but Stuart will make the final call.  Canberra  will miss Edrick Lee on the edge, he is often the game breaker for them. Tapine coming across gives them more go forward.  Teams hate travelling to the cold of the nations capital but Manly don't seem to be affected by this like other teams do. A tough game to pick.  Canberra to win at home.

Warriors V Broncos - Sat 04/06, 3.00p.m.

It's no secret that the road trip to Mt Smart stadium is a tricky one for sides to negotiate.  The Broncos have a lot of players backing up and the Warriors will welcome back the services of big Manu. The problem for the Warriors in 2016 is their administration and club is in tatters and the daunting road trip is daunting no more. For the Broncos, coming off two losses, they will be in the game to make sure it isn't 3.  I expect to see Wallace with ore minutes to try and ease the pressure off big tired forwards.  And look for Roberts to seek the ball out more and take more runs.  Interesting match up between Johnson and Hunt, might decide the result.  Broncos to win on the road.

 Cowboys V Knights - Sat 04/06, 5.30p.m.

See my in depth preview, click here.

Storm V Panthers - Sat 04/06, 7.30p.m.

For me the match of the round purely because both sides play such different brands of football. Storm ultra structured vs ad lib Panthers.  The key to this match up will be if Smith and Cronk back up.  Bellamy was going to rest them post Origin but with the Panthers style of play he will need at least one of his stars their to manage the contest.  Given Cronks ankle troubles and Harris named in the 7 jumper, I'd expect Smith to be the one who backs up. Origin takes it's heaviest toll on debutantes and Mansour and Moylan got through plenty of work the other night.  Expect them to peppered again with high balls.  If Storm can manage the contest they should get the win at home.

Roosters V Tigers - Sun 05/06, 4.00p.m.

I feel for the Tigers in this clash. They can take confidence from their two halves extending their contract options.  And this signifies that they want to be at the club and play for Taylor.  The problem for the Tigers is they just play differently when Farah is there.  It's no secret the halves prefer a different style of play and it affects Farah's game.  This was evidenced by the club trying to move him on last season. Let's not get into the politics of that club though.  For the Roosters they will have all players backing up and Copley and Waerea-Hargreaves are back to give them much needed go forward.   I have the Roosters purely because the Tigers halves don't gel well with their hooker.

Rabbitohs V Titans - Sun 05/06. 6.30p.m.

Adam Reynolds will be sore after Origin purely becasue of his workload but if anything the outing might help him grow a couple of strides back in club football.  Watch out clubs, he is already one of the best halves in the comp and there is no doubt Origin players go to another level.  The Titans are one club who get absolutely everything out of their list and they hang in games, and hang in games, and hang in games. The problem for them is that Souths have looked a completely different side since pushing Inglis into the 6. and the big men are finding a bit of go forward. Pair that with the Titans relying heavily on Bird week in week out and he is an ageing player at the back end of his career and might find backing up tougher than anyone in the comp. Rabbitohs will probably have too many points in them.

Bulldogs V Sharks - Mon 06/06, 7.00p.m.

Sharks are the least affected club out of Origin. Considering they have the longest turn around from Origin last Wednesday to Monday, this will suit Gallen and allow him to back up, where normally he may not have.  Maloney will be better for the run on Wednesday. Fifita didn't play enough minutes on Wednesday to affect him backing up.  Ennis is the key for the Sharks. Even though Daley seems to prefer Farah at hooker for Origin, and said he wants to stick with the same side.  The fact is they lost.  Ennis is in career best form and many thought on form he should have been in the sky blue.  Ennis still a big chance to play Origin this year and will be out to prove it on Monday.  The up and down Bulldogs have just announced Eastwood is out for a month and he is so important to their go forward. Kasiano is also yet to prove his fitness. And even though Hopoate comes back into the side.  However with Hopoate missing Sunday games I don't see how this doesn't impact their combinations.  Klemmer did a lot of work and Morris also looked a little out of sorts the other night.  Sharks the best side in the comp at the moment, should get the win.

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