Sport

NRL Round 5: Betting Preview and Tips

Melbourne Storm look to make it five wins from five to start the season when they face the North Queensland Cowboys in NRL Round 5 action on Friday night.

The 2017 NRL Grand Final is one of eight games with the fixtures kicking off on Thursday night at Suncorp Stadium as the Brisbane Broncos play host to Wests Tigers.

We preview each of the games below:

Brisbane Broncos v Wests Tigers

Thursday, April 11

Brisbane have dominated this fixture in recent times, winning eight of the last nine meetings between the teams, and I expect them to come out on top again on Thursday. The Tigers have barely threatened in attack the last two weeks, while I think the Broncos haven’t been too bad apart from last week against the minor premiers. Brisbane deserve to start favourites.

Prediction: Broncos win ($1.44 TopBetta)

Gold Coast Titans vs Penrith Panthers

Friday, April 12

Penrith Panthers have got an excellent chance to make it back-to-back wins against the bottom-placed Titans. Penrith have won their last four meetings and Gold Coast have been woeful to begin the season. If they don’t win this, they are in trouble.

Prediction: Panthers win ($1.66 TopBetta)

North Queensland Cowboys vs Melbourne Storm

Friday, April 12

With the Cowboys’ poor record against the competition leaders, it’s hard to see any way they can win on Friday night. Expect Melbourne to put together a more polished 80 minute this week and come away with another win.

Prediction: Storm win ($1.35 TopBetta)

South Sydney Rabbitohs vs New Zealand Warriors

Saturday, April 13  

Souths lost their first game of the season last week when they went down 13-12 to Manly at Lottoland – a performance that followed a scrappy win over the bottom-placed Titans the previous round. Souths have been the dominant team in this match-up recently, winning eight of their last nine meetings, while the last six of those have been by a 13+ margin. The Warriors haven’t had much luck against a disciplined and structured side, and Bennett won’t allow another lacklustre display from his side. Expect Souths to bounce back strongly.

Prediction: Rabbitohs by 13+ ($2.37 TopBetta)

Newcastle Knights vs Manly Sea Eagles

Saturday, April 13  

Newcastle have won the last two games between the sides, but both were close, and I can see another tight contest eventuating again on Saturday. The Knights aren’t doing much wrong, but they need a bit more spice in attack. Manly are playing tough football under Des Hasler, but the loss of Trbojevic is huge. It could be time for Newcastle to edge a confidence-boosting win to kick-start their season.

Prediction: Knights win ($1.54 TopBetta)

Cronulla Sharks vs Sydney Roosters

Saturday, April 13  

It’s been hard to get a read on the Sharks this season – they’re 2-2, but their two wins came against lowly Queensland sides the Titans and Cowboys, while they’ve also lost to the Knights, in addition to Parramatta last week.
It doesn’t look like form worthy of troubling the minor premiers on Saturday night. The Roosters are looking in excellent touch right now and will be full of confidence after destroying the Broncos last week. It’s looking like win No. 4 on the trot for the Roosters on Saturday.

Prediction: Roosters by 13+ ($2.88 TopBetta)

St George Illawarra Dragons vs Canterbury Bulldogs

Sunday, April 14  

Canterbury have won seven of their last eight meetings and demolished the joint-venture outfit 38-0 in Round 24 last season, when the Dogs had nothing to play for. On the back of their much-improved showings over the last two weeks, I think the Bulldogs can get over the line and post the upset in this one.

Prediction: Bulldogs win ($2.70 TopBetta)

Canberra Raiders vs Parramatta Eels

Sunday, April 14  

The winner will be ensured a place in the top four at the end of the round, but perhaps Canberra takes a slight advantage – they’ve won their last four meetings, and their defence is rock solid. It should be a superb contest, but at home, I’m backing the Raiders to edge it.

Prediction: Raiders win ($1.56 TopBetta)