Back again for this weekends selections for the Australian NRL. Over the last few weeks I have noticed I missed out some important team news, so maybe in future selections I will hold out a bit later to publish them. Anyway, here are my tips for Saturday and Sunday morning.
Date: Saturday – 06:00 (BST)
Match: Gold Coast Titans v Penrith Panthers
Bet: Penrith Panthers 1-12
Odds: 3.30 Bet365, 888 3.10 188Bet
Stake: 2 units
Date: Saturday – 10:30 (BST)
Match: Parramatta Eels v St George Illawarra Dragons
Bet: St George Illawarra 1-10
Odds: 3.50 Bet365, 3.48 use 1-10 Betfair PP (through using 1-5 and 6-10 markets)
Stake: 2 units
Date: Sunday – 05:00 (BST)
Match: Canberra v Wests Tigers
Bet: Wests Tigers 1-10
Odds: 4.33 Ladbrokes Coral, 4.00 Bet365 Betfair PP
Stake: 2 units
Gold Coast Titans v Penrith Panthers
The Panthers are in an odd spot this week after sacking coach Anthony Griffin and seem to be in a whirlwind of internal politics. But given how long this has been going on for I just cant see it having that big an affect on the players. In recent weeks Peachey has been moved to fullback with Crichton dropping to the reserve list. Peachey has had a couple of rocks and diamonds games in both his starts at fullback. 6 of Gold Coast’s 13 defeats with 8 of Penriths 13 victories coming by the 1-12 margin. With Gold Coast having home field advantage here I think the times Penrith win by 3 scores or more drastically reduces but with both Hipgrave and Matthews in the 17 I think the Titans have too many liabilities to bring their price in. Here we have an implied probability from the bookies that 43% of Penrith wins come by the 1 to 12 margin, but with the Panthers playing away here and the sides given records this season I see this happening in slightly over 50% of Penrith’s wins here.
Parramatta Eels v St George Illawarra Dragons
In spite of Parramatta actually winning a game for a change last week they’ve opted to make wholesale changes to a number of key positions. Some I like, like putting Hayne back to the wing. Others I find strange like Gutherson at centre, Norman at fullback and keeping Takarangi as a bench second rower. Overall though its hard to work out if this would work out in the long run but when sweeping changes happen from one week to the other we have to expect a bedding in period and that gives me suitable confidence the Dragons will walk out the victors against this Parra side. The Dragons have gone off the boil in recent weeks but the road back to victory could well start here. While only 5 of the Dragon’s 12 wins have come by 1-10 points with their form worries its hard to see a blow out and with 11 of Parra’s 15 losses coming by 1-10 point margins this looks to present good value and we can certainly expect more than half of the Dragon’s wins to be by 1-10 point margins much more than the 42.8% the bookies expect.
Canberra v Wests Tigers
OK I said on twitter I was gonna wait to see what happens with Cleary but actually I’m happier to strike while the odds are high and what structural changes does a team ever make in the space of a week. This is a great match up from the Tigers. They don’t have much on offence but against this Raiders side you don’t need much going forward. The Tigers defence ranks 4th this season in terms of points conceded but with the stone worst attack in the league. There’s therefore little chance of seeing the Tigers win by more than 10 points something that’s only happened in 2 of their 10 wins. The Raiders at the same time have a penchant for losing games close and with no Croker on kicking duties they’re outgunned at goal kicker. 9 of Canberra’s 12 defeats this season have come by 1-10 point margins. With the 4.33 odds available here on a bet that has landed in nearly half of these teams’ games last season this a very nice value spot indeed.