Wed, May 30, 4:23pm by Staff Writer
Round 13 sees a reduced number of games due to State of Origin Game One taking place next week. Several clubs will receive the bye with only four matches taking place across the weekend.
Manly Sea Eagles v Nth Queensland Cowboys, Thursday 31st May, 7.50pm, Lottoland
Preparations for this clash will have been disrupted with a total of five players across both teams called up for Origin duty. The Cowboys, however, will be targeting this as an opportunity to reignite their season as they continue to struggle. Johnathan Thurston’s first season of retirement from Rep footy means he will be available to give them guidance. They battled hard last week against the Storm and likely deserved better than an agonising one point loss. North Queensland stand at $2.05.
Manly suffered a close loss as well in Round 12 as they went down to Canberra. A missed conversion ultimately decided their fate and they will be looking to bounce back after winning the two games prior to that. Sitting 12th on the ladder, the Sea Eagles are not in the position that they would have wanted to be at this stage of the year. With Daly Chery-Evans missing out on Origin selection the pressure will come onto his shoulders as they are priced at $1.80.
Bet of the Match – North Queensland to Win by 1-12 points at $3.10
South Sydney Rabbitohs v Cronulla Sharks, Friday 1st June, 7.55pm, ANZ Stadium
This is the type of game that could well determine whether a side finish in the top four or not. Despite both teams being without a number of their key players, it is imperative to pick up points at Origin time. It is the Sharks who are least hit by Origin call ups with only Val Holmes missing, meaning they are favourites at $1.66. Add the fact that they are flying having won six games in a row and Cronulla are starting to look like the side that were Premiers in 2016.
The loss of four players in Greg Inglis, Damien Cook, Dane Gagai and Angus Crichton will certainly dent the Rabbitohs morale. It is imperative though that they put that loss behind them and concentrate on the talent remains. The Burgess brothers have been exceptional in recent weeks leading their side to 3rd on the ladder. They stand at $2.28.
Bet of the Match – South Sydney to Win by 1-12 points at $3.30
Sydney Roosters v Wests Tigers, Sunday 3rd June, 4.10pm, Allianz Stadium
Origin will only affect the Roosters in this clash, with Wests having the chance to name a virtually full-strength side. Having already beat them once this year, the Tigers will be eyeing a double over their bitter rivals. They are favourites to do so at $1.80. Although they will still have to be at their best to not be undone by an under-strength Roosters side.
For Sydney this is almost a must win game with Wests sitting just below them in 8th on the ladder. A battle for the top eight was not supposed to be how the Roosters season panned out, but that’s where they find themselves. The boost of retaining Cooper Cronk at Origin time could well be very timely as they stand at $2.05.
Bet of the Match – Wests to Win by 13+ points at $3.75
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