Thu, May 9, 11:25am by Rob Sheeley
Match: South Sydney Rabbitohs v. North Queensland Cowboys – NRL Round 9
When/Where: 7:35pm Friday, 10 May 2013 at ANZ Stadium
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The high flying South Sydney Rabbitohs look to continue their scintillating start to the season as they take on the resurgent North Queensland Cowboys this Friday.
The Rabbitohs machine rolled on last week with a convincing fourteen point win over the Broncos in Brisbane by 26-12. They now boast the same record as the league leaders (Melbourne) and only trail on point’s difference. Bookmakers are taking no risks on the myrtle and greens and currently have them at $5 in premiership markets.
The Cowboys made it two in a row last Saturday night when they snuck home by four points (14-10) in a thriller against the Eels. It may not have been the prettiest victory but they registered a much needed win away from home and have some momentum to build on from the victory.
The Cowboys are currently in eighth place and in a congested part of the competition with four sides all on eight points. This means that every win is vital and will be telling come the business end of the season. Bookmakers have the Cowboys at $15 in premiership markets.
The Rabbitohs v. Cowboys betting odds listed below are from Bet365.com, our NRL betting site of the week. Bet365 welcomes Australian punters, and is offering two different bonuses as well. First, they’re offering a 100% matching bonus (up to AUD $200) for all new customers. Then, place a wager on their mobile website and you’ll be eligible for another bonus of 100% up to AUD $100 on your next deposit.
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These head to head, margin, and line betting odds are based on 11:00am, Thursday 9 May. For the most current odds, please visit www.Bet365.com.
Head to Head Odds
Rabbitohs – $1.30
Cowboys – $3.65
Rabbitohs 1-12 – $2.90
Rabbitohs 13+ – $2.20
Cowboys 1-12 – $5.00
Cowboys 13+ – $9.00
Rabbitohs -9.5 – $1.87
Cowboys +9.5 – $1.95
• Rabbitohs have won 7 of the last 8 against the Cowboys.
• The Rabbitohs & Cowboys have met 22 times. Rabbitohs have won 12, Cowboys 9, 1 draw.
• The Rabbitohs have won 3 of their last 5 at ANZ Stadium.
• The Cowboys have lost 8 of their last 9 at ANZ Stadium.
The South Sydney Rabbitohs have named the same squad of eighteen that travelled to Brisbane and tasted success last weekend.
1. Greg Inglis
2. Nathan Merritt
3. Beau Champion
4. Bryson Goodwin
5. Andrew Everingham
6. John Sutton
7. Adam Reynolds
8. Dave Tyrrell
9. Issac Luke
10. Roy Asotasi
11. Chris McQueen
12. Ben Te’o
13. Sam Burgess
14. Nathan Peats
15. Jason Clark
16. Ben Lowe
17. George Burgess
18. Jeff Lima
South Sydney proved again that they are a serious title contender last weekend with a clinical disposal of the Broncos in Brisbane. Despite meeting some tough opposition the Rabbitohs proved too resilient and terrific in their execution.
In Round 7 the Rabbitohs established themselves as clear cut second favourites for the 2013 title. They were too good for the Sea Eagles, winning by eight points (20-12) in a torrid encounter which was unquestionably the toughest game this season.
In Round 6 they met the competition yard stick, the Melbourne Storm. They managed to stay in the contest but came up against the top team at their very best. In the end only seven points separated the Rabbitohs and the white hot reigning premiers.
Prior to that match they’d fought hard to secure wins against the Warriors, Bulldogs and Panthers. All of those games may have held some anxious moments for South Sydney but their ability to execute the big plays again shone through.
They will be expected to continue the form they have shown up until this point again this week.
The North Queensland Cowboys have named the same starting seventeen as the side that conquered the Eels last weekend. They have added Scott Bolton and Scott Moore to an extended bench, with strong speculation that Bolton may well start the match.
1. Matthew Bowen
2. Ashley Graham
3. Brent Tate
4. Kane Linnett
5. Antonio Winterstein
6. Johnathan Thurston (c)
7. Michael Morgan
8. Matthew Scott (c)
9. Rory Kostjasyn
10. James Tamou
11. Tariq Sims
12. Gavin Cooper
13. Dallas Johnson
14. Ray Thompson
15. Glenn Hall
16. Joel Riethmuller
17. Ashton Sims
18. Scott Bolton
19. Scott Moore
The Cowboys are slowly starting to find some consistency this season. After a shaky start, they have managed to win three of their last four games. They have now managed four wins from their eight matches and remain well in contention for the top eight.
Last week, the Cowboys met the Eels who were desperate to restore some pride after suffering a big loss the week before. The Cowboys did look in control for most of the match but failed to really put the Parramatta side away. The Eels almost snatched victory right on the bell but for some desperate scrambling Cowboys defence. It was a four point win in the end (14-10) but it does not instil a lot of confidence in the Cowboys away form.
In Round 7, they were reasonably methodical in their defeat of the Raiders 30-12. They took an early ascendency and made sure they dictated the match from there.
In Round 6, the Cowboys were close to beating one of the competitions form teams, the Broncos. In the end they went down by just two points (12-10). This was enough evidence to show that they can match it with the higher placed teams this season. The question mark hangs mainly over their consistency.
In Round 5, we witnessed what the Cowboys are capable of when they put paid to the Panthers 30-0. That match may have signalled a return to form for the North Queensland club despite their narrow loss last time out.
The Cowboys appear to at least be developing some consistency in recent times. While they have not been overly convincing they have at least been winning. This match looms as a real test.
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South Sydney not only have an embarrassment of stars at their disposal but are developing into a fantastic combined unit. This is one of the key attributes to their success this season.
Roy Asotasi is set to play his two hundredth NRL first grade match in this encounter. Expect the giant Rabbitohs prop to be well and truly up for this one. Centre Beau Champion also plays his one hundredth first grade match.
Greg Inglis has really found his niche in the number one jersey and gives his side a massive advantage with his kick returns. Inglis makes what can be an arduous task into a deadly attacking opportunity. The Cowboys kick chase will need to be spot on to thwart this.
The importance of the battle between the two sets of halves in this match cannot be understated. Jonathan Thurston and Michael Morgan have been improving each week as a combination and have styles of play that complement each other nicely. They come up against one of the best pairings in the competition.
Adam Reynolds and John Sutton have formed a lethal combination that has been a cornerstone of the Rabbitohs success in 2013. Both are great runners of the ball which (in addition to their top class kicking and passing games) sees them loom as a most unpredictable threat.
The key battle for this match really lies in the forwards. The imposing pairing of test front rowers for the Cowboys against the Rabbitohs pack that boasts both an English and a Kiwi giant. The arm wrestle between the two packs will be the foundation on which victory is built.
The Rabbitohs look a stronger side right across the park and have proven themselves to be very consistent and cool under pressure. I don’t expect this to be all way traffic but think that South Sydney will pack too much punch when it matters.
My Rabbitohs vs. Cowboys Prediction: Rabbitohs by 10
In the head to head market I like the Rabbitohs $1.30 at www.Bet365.com.
The Rabbitohs are more fancied to win by a large margin. With that in mind, $2.90 for Rabbitohs 1-12 looks good value.
We will go for Adam Everingham to score the first try of the match, he is currently $11.
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