Round nine selections

North Queensland Cowboys vs Sydney Roosters – Thursday night – Queensland Country Bank Stadium

The Cowboys aren't under the same sort of pressure as their Queensland compatriots in the capital, but they are under pressure. They were comprehensively walloped by the Eels last week, which is a fair representation of where the Cowboys find themselves when compared with the better teams in the NRL. The Roosters are the only team to beat the Eels this season, so that tells you how hard this will be for the home team. That the Roosters have a few injury concerns, and some doubts about a whole bunch of their forwards (Liu, Cordnor, Waerea-Hargreaves) raises the Cowboys prospects a little, but not a lot.

Verdict – Roosters by 16

Result – Roosters 42 defeated Cowboys 16

Gold Coast Titans vs New Zealand Warriors – Friday night – CBus Super Stadium

We all like to make fun of wingers from time to time (especially me), so it's only fair that I give one of them a wrap from time to time, especially when someone flies under the radar. Ken Maumalo is proper flying, and has been for some time now. In round eight he made ten tackle breaks, two line breaks, two tries and just shy of 300 metres. In a team that at times struggles to lift themselves, Maumalo is putting his hand up almost every week. I'm tipping the Warriors here, who could easily have the lions share of crowd support on Friday night on the Gold Coast. I'd be more confident if I knew Nikorima was cleared to play, but he looks more likely than not. For the Titans, Mitch Rein is in doubt, but Nathan Peats isn't far away and could be a surprise inclusion.

Verdict – Warriors by 4

Result – Titans 16 defeated Warriors 12

South Sydney Rabbitohs vs Wests Tigers – Friday night – Bankwest Stadium

The Tigers have lost one and possibly two Leiluas for this clash, with Luciano injured and Joey getting reckless (to the surprise of almost no-one). Reckless Joey creates some selection challenges for the Tigers as Jennings is unavailable. There's some chance Chris Lawrence returns and slots into the centres in the interim. The Bunnies are without Braiden Burns for the rest of the year while they rebuild his kneecap. That said, the Bunnies backline are all class, and should do enough in what looks like one of the better games of footy this weekend.

Verdict – Rabbitohs by 8

Result – Rabbitohs 18 defeated Tigers 10

Cronulla Sharks vs Penrith Panthers – Saturday afternoon – Netstrata Jubilee Stadium

The hamstrings of Matt Moylan, held together most weeks with good intentions and plumbers tape, have come undone once again - he'll be unavailable for a few weeks. Dugan might slot in at fullback, but Kennedy getting the call up seems more likely. Brian To'o is likely to be ruled out with an ankle injury for the Panthers, with Malakai Watene-Zelezniak the logical replacement. The Sharks have strung a few wins together but they have been playing in the shallow end of the pool of late. Now they have to take on a side that has beaten both the Roosters and the Storm this season. It's top shelf form, and the steadying hand (and feet) of Nathan Clearly can get the Panthers the points.

Verdict – Panthers by 4

Result – Panthers 56 defeated Sharks 24

Brisbane Broncos vs Canterbury Bulldogs – Saturday night – Suncorp Stadium

They've laughed. They've cried. They've gaffed. They've tried. The only thing the Broncos haven't done is win. Plenty of us (me included) thought the Broncos could resurrect their season (to a point) during this run of games against easier sides. They started as favourite against the Titans and the Warriors and lost to them both, and once again they're the favourite to win this game too. They could win, they could win this by 40, but I'll tip the Bulldogs who have half the talent but twice the heart.

Verdict – Bulldogs by 2

Result – Broncos 26 defeated Bulldogs 8

Canberra Raiders vs Melbourne Storm – Saturday night – GIO Stadium

While the Raiders form in recent weeks has been below their best, they have shown for many seasons that, for reasons that are difficult to explain, they are the team with the wood on the Storm (including in round three in Melbourne). The Storm are backing up from an epic contest, and they are without Vunivalu, a vital cog for the Storm when they're trying to gain ground and momentum early in tackle counts. With the Storm now enjoying the weather on the Sunshine Coast a road trip to Canberra on a wet Saturday night doesn't sound like fun.

Verdict – Raiders by 4

Result – Storm 20 defeated Raiders 14

Newcastle Knights vs Parramatta Eels – Sunday afternoon – McDonald Jones Stadium

The Knights return to Newcastle for the first time since round one when they kept the Warriors scoreless. This is harder but not impossible, although the injuries to Edrick Lee and Siona Mata'utia don't help. The forwards battle has me licking my lips, and the return of Nathan Brown gives, I think, the Eels a slight advantage. Parramatta coped without Mitchell Moses last weekend and I think they can do it again. It's the match of the round, and I'm happy this contest jagged the Sunday afternoon timeslot.

Verdict – Eels by 2

Result – Eels 10 defeated Knights 4

St George Illawarra Dragons vs Manly Sea Eagles – Sunday night – Netstrata Jubilee Stadium

The suspension of Addin Fonua-Blake is difficult to ignore - he has been one of the form prop forwards in the NRL for quite some time. Taniela Paseka moves into the starting pack. The Dragons are showing signs of life, and while I agree that they are coming off a low base, the green shoots are there and I feel like what they have is the beginning of a competitive football team. They are the outsider in this contest, but I'm giving them a proper chance. Hunt at hooker and McInnes at lock makes sense to me.

Verdict – Dragons by 1

Result – Dragons 34 defeated Sea Eagles 4

Wally Lewis - round nine selections (in bold)

Note: tips from Wally will be published on Wednesday night or Thursday morning

  • Cowboys vs ROOSTERS
  • Titans vs WARRIORS
  • RABBITOHS vs Tigers
  • Sharks vs PANTHERS
  • BRONCOS vs Bulldogs
  • Raiders vs STORM
  • Knights vs EELS
  • Dragons vs SEA EAGLES


The Thinker's picture

Greetings football fans

I have updated the NRL ladder and the tipping comp after round 8. Plenty of high scores this round, but worth shout outs to Angel Shark, NuLiF and Gad who all scored perfect rounds.

If anyone notices anything wrong with the scores just let me know and I will amend.

I will have my previews and selections for round 9 published by Wednesday.

All the best

tigerholic's picture

Thanks Thinker
Well done to Angel Shark, NuLif and Gad for picking the lot. How could you pick the Warriors to beat Brisbane.

Well done folks, great effort.


Christine's picture

Tiger i told you warriors would win but if i had tipped them they would have lost ...

Christine's picture

Tiger rocket is only 2 points behind you ,next week you better pull out your best or he might catch up to you ...

tigerholic's picture

Hey Christine

I'll have Rocket covered, he will keep taking roughies and I'll pull further ahead. You shouldn't have changed your tip from NZ to Brisbane, you might have cursed the Broncs.

Have a good week


Rocket Ryan's picture

Hit the favourite button tiger its easier than thinking.

Rocket Ryan's picture

Where is old mate hope it was not him fell down the hotel elevator shaft.........

Christine's picture

Tiger i chNged my tip because i eould have cursed the warriors if i didn't ...

Christine's picture

That said i changed my tip so i didn't curse warriors ...

Christine's picture

Rocket please tell me you are not tipping broncos this week ...

Rocket Ryan's picture

You bet I am Christine dogs no chance get on the Broncos now before the odd Shorten

Rocket Ryan's picture

What about you tiger man with your number plates and your pyjamas are the rabbits going to scare you in the running for cover

Rocket Ryan's picture

Where is The Block

tigerholic's picture

Morning Rocket

Looks like someone has hacked into your account, there were no mistakes in your 3 posts, definitely can't have been you.

Stick it to hime Christine.


NuL1F3's picture

Thanks Tigerholic and Mr Thinker, first time in 3 years of tipping... and it happened to be the week I forget to get my tips in with a local radio station comp which rewards 8 from 8 tips. Fingers crossed it's not another three years before I get them all right again lol.

Rocket Ryan's picture

Tigerholic can you put your tips in early this week.

Christine's picture

No tiger don't just do what you normally do , rocket tjr wsy thenbroncos are playing even bulldogs can beat them ...

Christine's picture

That said no tiger don't , rocket the way broncos are playing bulldogs can beat them & that is saying something they have alrrady been beaten by titans & warriors if bulldogs beat them will you jump ship ot are you dtill going to stay loyal & true to your team even in crisis ...

Rocket Ryan's picture

Whats with the hiding behind christine bullshit tigerholic i noticed you set her after the block last week.

mark ashford's picture

Hey Rocket
Saw an interesting news grab tonight where Siebold said he didn't have any performance clauses in his contract and fair dinkum only a few minutes later Paul White was on saying Siebold definately had performance based clauses in his contract. Wonder who is correct?
Maybe White is trying to ease out Siebold to make way for Kevvie Walters. Can't hurt as Kevvie has no duties until the season is over.

Christine's picture

Rocket are you going to tell the thinker he is stupid for tipping bulldogs or just me common sense prevails your tipping with your heart not your head ...

newbie from perth's picture

Sa-wat-dee krup,

The Storm and the Roosters put on stellar exhibition of Rugby League at its best last week in a golden point thriller. It was just a joy to watch. We might have to wait a long time to witness something of the same calibre to be honest. Even though I’m a Roosters fan (y’all know that anyway) and gutted that we lost, you could possibly argue it was a shame that one of them had to lose, a draw would have been a fitting result perhaps.

Before we start, apologies up front for my 2,757 word novel 😂. Also, loved that Hendrix video you put up Mr Ashford. Brings back memories 💪. Best guitarist ever, hands down! Still have 2 “vinyls” of Jimi sitting in the wardrobe. Boo-Yah! OK, let’s get into it…

Cowboys vs. Roosters 30-70 @ Townsville
Ladder Position = Roosters
Bookies Favourite = Roosters

As dominant as the Eels were last week, at half-time I thought the Cowboys were still in it, even though they were 16-4 down. At times they were throwing the ball around trying to find a way to score but the Eels defence just kept shutting them down. Not convinced the Cowboys’ second half capitulation was all their doing or if it was due to the Eels going into overdrive. Whatever reason, the Cowboys had no answer to the ferocious attacking performance from the Eels, finally succumbing to an embarrassing 42-4 loss. The stats were putrid for the poor ol’ Cowboys. Less possession (40-60), less post contact metres (573-987), less line breaks (3-7), less tackle breaks (19-39), less offloads (7-23), less kicking metres (378-656) and more ineffective tackles (40-12). Definitely some areas to work on.

The Roosters were looking good in the first half and led going into the sheds 12-6. It could’ve been more had they not made so many errors and let the Storm back into the game. The second half was pretty much the same and somehow the Roosters managed to get to a 22-12 lead with 9 minutes to go and they looked to have the match wrapped up. After some (very) poor Roosters defence, the Storm scored 2 quick tries and hit the front. Roosters level through a penalty and then edge ahead by one through a field goal. With 40 seconds to go and a set of six to come, you would’ve thought they were again home and hosed but instead they manage to cough the ball up and Papenhuyzen levels with a field goal of his own to send the match into golden point. Extra-time didn’t go the Roosters’ way and after Dale Finucane got tackled in the Roosters’ 20, Jake Friend gave away an “insane” penalty and the Storm got up by 2 points, winning it 27-25. Good efforts from Keary and Morris just weren’t enough to get the Roosters over the line. The Roosters’ stats were mixed with less possession (46-54), an inferior completion rate (64-85), more errors (18-10) and more penalties conceded (6-3). On the positive side they had more line breaks (6-1), less missed tackles (17-36) and less ineffective tackles (11-21). I’m confused.

Verdict: Roosters. Begurk! 🐔 Begurk! 🐔

Titans vs. Warriors 50-50 @ Suncorp
Ladder Position = Warriors
Bookies Favourite = Titans

In a pretty even first half, the Sharks led last week against the Titans 12-10. The Titans did well to hang in there and they might’ve been in the lead at the 38 minute mark had Fermor offloaded to Taylor on the inside instead of going wide for Peachey to knock on. Big chance missed there. The Titans undid all the good work from the first half and put in a poor second half performance. They did have players missing before the match and lost a couple more during the game though. The Titans are in dire trouble with injuries yet again. They lost Kevin Proctor (bicep), Phil Sami (shoulder) and Brian Kelly (quad strain) before the game and then they lost a couple more during the game. Mitch Rein hobbled off with a knee injury and then they lost Tanah Boyd to a shoulder injury. Not much you can do when your players are dropping like flies. Stats of note included less possession (44-56), inferior completion rate (68-83), less post contact metres (291-502) and more errors (17-10).

After the Broncos led 10-6 at half-time, you might’ve thought they’d possibly go on with it in the second half but alas, it was not to be. The Warriors turned up the heat in the second half, outscoring the Broncos 20-6 and eventually running out determined 26-16 winners. So the Warriors have played at Gosford 3 times and have won 3 times. Interesting. It was a determined and hard fought win made more impressive given the fact they lost Nikorima after the first 4 minutes of the game and were missing RTS as well. I’m wondering if Mark Robinson still wants to get rid of Blake Green after his (Blake’s) inspired effort last week. Great effort from Maumalo as well, running for 290-odd metres and scoring 2 tries. Stats for the Warriors were a bit mixed with a superior completion rate (78-69), more line breaks (5-2), less tackle breaks (23-34), more ineffective tackles (19-13), less errors (9-12) and less penalties conceded (1-6).

Verdict: Man this is a tough one and I can make a case for both of them. Dunno, should I tip the Warriors again even though it’s at Suncorp? Yeah, why not. Warriors for me.

Rabbitohs vs. Tigers 55-45 @ BankWest
Ladder Position = Tigers
Bookies Favourite = Rabbitohs

Even though they had a fairly good first half last week, the Rabbitohs were only leading the Bulldogs 8-6 at the break. The Rabbitohs met a little resistance in the second half but eventually ran out 26-10 winners. Yes the scoreline was comfortable but it flattered Souths who were far from convincing in my mind. The way they’re going I’m not even sure they’ll make the 8 to be honest. Since the restart they’ve only managed to beat the Bulldogs, Titans and Warriors. They really need to come out firing from the get-go if they want to claim some scalps from those sides above them. Stats-wise they had less possession (48-52), more tackle breaks (31-20), more ineffective tackles (20-10) and more penalties conceded (6-2).

After a good first half in attack and defence, the Tigers went into the break last week against the Panthers leading 10-6. As good as they were they let the Panthers skip away just a bit and eventually went down 19-12. A good effort (especially in defence) against a quality side and it should give them a lot of confidence in the weeks ahead. The stats weren’t kind to the Tigers and they had less possession (45-55), less tackle breaks (37-45), less forced drop outs (1-3) and less intercepts (0-2). They did however manage less ineffective tackles (3-21).

Verdict: Tigers for me.

Sharks vs. Panthers 40-60 @ BankWest
Ladder Position = Panthers
Bookies Favourite = Panthers

In a pretty even first half, the Sharks led last week against the Titans 12-10. The Sharks could have had a bigger lead if they’d been able to cash in on their chances better and reduced their errors. The Sharks came out in the second half and just blew the Titans away, finally ending up with an inspiring 40-10 win. The second half was all Sharks, scoring five tries and keeping the Titans scoreless. The few stats that stood out weren’t too bad with more possession (56-44), superior completion rate (83-68), more post contact metres (502-291) and less errors (10-17).

A tough first half for the Panthers last week against the Tigers saw them behind 10-6 at the break. The second half was better for them and they scored a couple of tries and kept the Tigers to a single penalty goal and ran out 19-12 winners. The Panthers are continually proving how resilient they are. Their defence stood up well and as usual, Cleary’s traffic direction was exceptional. Pretty good stats for the Panthers. They had more possession (55-45), more tackle breaks (45-37), more forced drop outs (3-1) and more intercepts (2-0). Strangely, they had more ineffective tackles (21-3).

Verdict: You gotta stick with the Panthers don’t ya? Yeah, Panthers for me.

Broncos vs. Bulldogs 55-45 @ Suncorp
Ladder Position = Broncos
Bookies Favourite = Broncos

There seemed to be some glimmer of hope when Coates scored 2 tries and the Broncos led 10-6 at half-time, but their last 20 minutes of the match wasn’t that good and they eventually succumbed to a 26-16 loss. It just seemed like their execution was completely absent, not sure. I noticed some of the Broncos players were a bit emotional after the game. This is telling me that at least they’re trying and that has to be a good thing. Still leaves me wondering where their problems lie. They’ve now lost 6 in a row and somehow need to find a way out of this hole they’re currently in. Like the Warriors, the stats for the Broncos were a bit mixed with an inferior completion rate (69-78), less line breaks (2-5), more tackle breaks (34-23), less ineffective tackles (13-19), more errors (12-9) and more penalties conceded (6-1).

The Bulldogs had a good first half last week against the Rabbitohs and were only down 8-6 at the break. They had a decent crack in the second 40 but Souths were just a little too good in the end and the Doggies went down 26-10. The Bulldogs were somewhat competitive but as usual they lacked a little in attack but full points for their endeavour. Stats-wise they had more possession (52-48), less tackle breaks (20-31), less ineffective tackles (10-20) and less penalties conceded (2-6). Interesting to see if Luke Thompson is worth all the hype…

Verdict: I’m really (really) tempted to tip the Bulldogs but I’m expecting the pain (and tears) from last week will fire the Broncos on to a much needed win. Broncos for me.

Raiders vs. Storm 40-60 @ Campbelltown
Ladder Position = Storm
Bookies Favourite = Raiders

The Raiders were good in attack last week against the Dragons and at half-time were leading 18-0. It could’ve been more had it not been for some shoddy finishing. The Dragons came back at them in the second half, outscoring them 16-6 but the Raiders managed to hold on and run out 22-16 winners. They don’t look like the Raiders of old. Nowhere near where they were last year, sloppy at times and they seem to be lacking that little bit of polish. Yeah, they lost some blokes during the match (Soliola, Whitehead & Guler) but that shouldn’t be an excuse for taking your foot off the accelerator. Not much to write home about with the stats. Less possession (46-54), less tackle breaks (24-43) and more ineffective tackles (15-8).

The Roosters scored first but a few minutes later Addo-Carr pounced on a loose ball error from the Roosters and dashed away to score and it was all locked up at 6-6. The Storm had chances to get in front but couldn't get it done. They paid the price late in the half when Josh Morris crossed over the line and the Storm went into the break 6-12 down. Down 12-22 with just nine minutes to go, the Storm scored 2 quick tries and hit the front for the first time in the match. Roosters got level through a penalty and then edged ahead by one through a field goal. With 40 seconds to go you would’ve thought the Storm were gone but instead they manage to come up with the ball and Papenhuyzen levels with a field goal. In a golden point epic, extra-time was going the way of the Storm. Dale Finucane charges into the Roosters’ 20 zone and Jake Friend gives away a penalty as Finucane attempts to play the ball. Cameron Smith steps up says “thank you very much” and the Storm win it 27-25. Phew! A stunning comeback win from the Storm. As usual, a great game from Cam Smith. Stats were a bit up and down with the Storm having more possession (54-46), a better completion rate (85-64), less errors (10-18) and less penalties conceded (3-6). On the negative they had less line breaks (1-6), more missed tackles (36-17) and more ineffective tackles (21-11).

Verdict: If last week was anything to go by, the Storm should get up here.

Knights vs. Eels 40-60 @ Central Coast
Ladder Position = Eels
Bookies Favourite = Eels

A couple of tries in the first half against Manly last week saw the Knights heading to the sheds leading 14-6. They had a scoreless second half and that try 40 seconds before half-time ultimately proved the difference in them surviving to win the game 14-12. Terrific defensive effort in the second half for sure. One of the best efforts so far this year from any side I’d go so far as to say. They were down on troops and Manly were pressuring and they stood firm. Correct me if I’m wrong but I reckon they’re the first side this year to remain scoreless in the second half and actually win 🤔. They did it tough alright and on balance I thought they were deserved winners. Only a few stats stood out for me with the Knights and they weren’t positive. They had less possession (48-52), less line breaks (1-3), less tackle breaks (17-34) and more ineffective tackles (13-8).

A fairly comfortable first half from the Eels last week saw them leading the Cowboys 16-4 at the break. As good as their first half was, it was nothing compared to their second half effort. “Simply outstanding” would describe it best. They were totally irresistible and dominated the Cowboys in all areas and finally ran out impressive 42-4 winners. What better way for Clint Gutherson to celebrate his 100 games eh? A super effort setting up 3 tries, kicking 6 goals and running for over 200 metres. He’d have to be happy with that. And let’s not forget Sivo’s effort in scoring 4 tries on the night. The Eels had a field day stats-wise. More possession (60-40), more post contact metres (987-573), more line breaks (7-3), more tackle breaks (39-19), more offloads (23-7), more kicking metres (656-378) and less ineffective tackles (12-40). Them’s some good numbers.

Verdict: I reckon last week might’ve taken its toll on the Knights so I’ll be tipping Baggy’s BOYS (Eels) in this one.

Dragons vs. Manly 40-60 @ Campbelltown Stadium
Ladder Position = Manly
Bookies Favourite = Manly

The Dragons were simply outplayed in the first half last week against the Raiders and went into the sheds 18-0 down. They had their chances but couldn’t convert against the Raiders’ defence. The second half was a different story though. They outscored the Raiders 16-6 but they just fell short and went down 22-16. It took them an hour to score their first try and just another 5 minutes to get their second and it seemed like they were getting back into the game. Unfortunately for them, the Raiders managed to defend just enough and hang on. Another try with a minute to go proved the Dragons hadn’t given up but it just wasn’t enough on the day. Only stats of note were more possession (54-46), more tackle breaks (43-24) and less ineffective tackles (8-15).

Manly were only 2 points behind leading up to half-time last week but let the Knights in just before the siren and went into the sheds 14-6 down. Their attack in the second half was pressuring the Knights continually but they could only score the one try and finally went down 14-12. Keeping the Knights scoreless in the second half was a highlight for me. Given the pressure they were applying and the Knights’ woes with available personnel, I really think they should have done a little better and won that. It was there for the taking but they just couldn’t get past the Knights’ defence. Only a few stats highlights for me with Manly having more possession (52-48), more line breaks (3-1), more tackle breaks (34-17) and less ineffective tackles (8-13).

Verdict: I have an uneasy feeling about this one but I’ll stick with Manly.

Let’s finish off with another “Song of the Week”…

Something (sorta) different this week. Enjoy…

OK kids, good luck with your tipping and may your team win by 40 points! Until next week people. Cheers.

Christine's picture

Mark & rocket & every other broncos supporter on here thinker you arr included i just read in tweets an article about seibold's performance clause in his contract the article was posted by fox sport quote it said white said there is a performance clause in seibolds 5 year contract & he will be given a chance too turn things around but from what i read if seibold doesn't preform it reduces the value of his contract when it comes too terminating the contract ...

Rocket Ryan's picture

Way seibolds going he'll have to pay the Broncos to sever his contract all that said the Broncos are specials this week Christine put your house on them can't lose
I bet Tigerholic tips them to win he is in out camp more than the Tigers

Rocket Ryan's picture

Christine what is Tiger taking this week he's tips still aren't in I could just about fill them in for him he will take the Broncos will take the rabbits and all the other favourites see how close I am

Dragons-fanboy's picture

Hey everyone, my tips for this week are:

Roosters by 16 - Roosters should get the win here. They are coming off the game of the season thus far against the Storm. Geez wasn't that a cracker but unfortunately for the Roosters, they didn't come away with the two points and had their winning streak broken. The Cowboys on the other hand, played not too bad in the first half and they were in it at half-time down 16-4 but that second half was just really disappointing from the Cowboys and they went down 42-4. The Cowboys do welcome back Val Holmes which is a key for them and some changes in the backline have been made and the Roosters have a couple more troops out in this one. But I think the Roosters will still be too strong in this one. Too much firepower in the backs and that forward pack still is strong and will edge out that Cowboys forward pack.

Warriors by 10 - This will be a good game I think. As we all know though, the Warriors are the Titans' bogey side. The Warriors seem to almost every time get the win over the Titans. No matter where they are playing. The Warriors should be able to get some fans in at Cbus and it may be very close to even stevens in terms of the crowd numbers for each side. Titans will be missing Rein and Boyd to injury I think since they did come off in that game against the Sharks but we will see. The Warriors will be welcoming back RTS which is a boost for them and Jazz Tevaga returns on the bench. I think that the Warriors will go back to back for the first time this season here and continue on their merry ways against the Titans. Titans played disappointing in the second half last week wheras, the Warriors played an amazing second half last week. Interesting to see what sides will come out in this one.

Rabbitohs by 6 - This should be a cracker. the 9th placed Rabbitohs come up against the 8th placed Tigers. What's crazy is that 7th to 9th have the exact same points on the ladder with a points differential difference of just 2. Crazy huh? The Rabbitohs came away with a hard fought win over the Dogs as much as the scoreboard flattered the Bunnies, they did have to work for that win. The Tigers on the other hand, came off that really physical game against the Panthers and what was very disappointing was what J. Leilua done which has got him to miss 6 weeks. SMH! And potentially his brother may miss out too which makes things tough for the Tigers. The Rabbitohs should have too much attacking prowess in the tank for the Tigers in the backs which makes that forwards battle very important. We know the Tigers can attack too so I think we'll be in for a high scoring game but it'll be the Rabbits who end up on top here in a close one.

Panthers by 12 - Panthers are coming off a tough win over the Tigers last week. Geez haven't the Panthers been great this season. The Sharks on the other hand, came away with a big win over the Titans and have now won 3 in a row and are now in the 8 looking good! The Sharks may upset the Panthers but I think the Panthers will be too good here. Cleary is key again and if he performs again, Panthers win! Sharks need to rely on their big time players but how well have their youngsters gone, Kotoa, Rudolf, Ramien, Jack Williams to name a few. All played good games. And now you add Mulitalo to the mix who is a talented young player himself. The Panthers do have their hands full with those youngsters and also Johnson, Townsend, Dugan, etc. But I think the Panthers will handle them fine and as long as Cleary is playing well, the Panthers will go a long way into winning this one. They have a good set of young players themselves and have an intimidating set of forwards led by Fisher-Harris and an absolute tank in Kikau.

Broncos by 2 - Geez louise this one was so difficult for me to pick. :O! The Broncos have now lost six in a row and are in disarray at the moment. You saw the emotion on some of the players though, really shows that they care. They are trying but something just isn't right. Speaking of trying, we all know the Dogs give it a good crack week in, week out but end up short due to lack of attack and in some cases, from some poor defence. This may end up being a low scoring game due to the lack of attack from these two sides or you just never know, the Broncos could put a score on the Dogs or heck the Dogs could finally click in attack and put a score on the Broncos. We'll find out on Saturday night but the talent is definitely there for the Broncos, they just need to go out and deliver. Will they finally get the W over a team where they are expected to beat? If they don't they will end up down the bottom by the end of the round, depends on Titans too. But this looks a snoozer considering this is two of the bottom sides but we may be surprised and get a cracking game of footy. The emotional Broncos will hopefully lift and the Bulldogs players will most certainly give this a red hot crack. Considering the hype, Luke Thompson may just be what the Bulldogs are looking for, will be intriguing to see how he goes but I'm tipping the Broncos this week. Please don't let me down Broncos. Pleaseeeee!!!!!!!!!!!

Storm by 8 - The Raiders may just upset the Storm just like they have the last three times these sides have met. But if the Storm are able to back up from last week, they look the goods in this one. Raiders definitely need to lift here because although they were great in the first half and had a 22-0 lead over the Dragons at one stage, the Raiders weren't so convincing whatsoever and if they dish up what the dished up against the Saints, particularly in the last 20 minutes, Storm win no doubt. But the Raiders seem to lift against the Storm but if the Storm can bring what they bring last week, they should be too good for the Raiders here. Home ground advantage for the Raiders may play a role and the Storm are a good enough away team as we are all aware of. There are some mouth-watering battles to look forward to here; CNZ v Papenhuyzen, Hodgson v Smith, and that forwards battle looks good. Also gotta note, those Raiders casualties are some huge outs and makes the Storm's chances a little bit easier even though they are missing Vunivalu and still Munster who are both integral players for the Storm.

Eels by 7 - This is the game of the round folks. We've got the Knights who came off a really hard fought win over Manly up against the ladder leading Eels who are on fire at the moment. Knights desperately have to lift big time! They have it in them, they really do but I think it'll be Parramatta who continue on their amazing season so far. They just have an amazing lineup and I really love how much Dylan Brown stepped up in the absence of Mitch Moses. I expect him to do the same again and it will show just how consistent of a player he is being able to step up. The Knights have Mitchell Pearce though and when he is on, he will be able to steer the ship for the Knights and with the likes of Ponga and McCoullough in the spine, it makes for a deadly combination when they are on and not to mention, Mann seems to gel very well with Pearce in the halves too. Forward battle is key. Knights have to win that forwards battle if they are going to win but it will be really tough considering how well those Parra forwards have gone. Knights will be missing Edrick Lee who is a massive out and also Sione Matau'tia who is a big out too, this makes me more confident in my tip of the Eels even though the Eels are missing a couple of players themselves who are bench players though and are pretty easy to replace (no offence intended). Eels for me to get that record of theirs to 7-1 and remain on top in an absolute belter of a game!

And finally... Dragons by 4 - I think that the Dragons can upset Manly here. The Dragons' late fightback wasn't enough to beat the Raiders on Friday night. The Dragons left it too late and the Raiders were just too good in defence in the end for us Dragons. That fightback was pretty impressive though and if we ca bring that into this game, we are a genuine chance of beating the Sea Eagles here. Manly came off a real tough loss over the Knights, really tough considering they were unlucky they didn't get that penalty call in the end that could've sent the game to golden point but what can you do? That's footy I'm afraid and Manly had countless opportunities to get the Knights but unfortunately for them, they didn't capitilise. I really hope the Dragons can muscle up here and with the return of Tariq Sims means we've got some extra spice in the forwards pack and that forward pack looks good. Hunt at 9 and McInnes at 13 makes lots of sense. Without Addin Fonua-Blake as well makes our job easier. I'll be cheering the boys on and hoping that we can chalk up win number three on the board on our return to Kogarah. I think that occasion in itself can lift the boys up... hopefully! C'mon Dragons!!!

Awesome. Good luck with everyone's teams for this week and with everyone's tips for this week. Cheers and enjoy the rest of your week!!!!!!!!!!

Dragons-fanboy's picture

The Sharks my be missing Moylan too who is out, that probably increases the Panthers' chances sightly, just wanted to mention that too about Moylan being out in regards to the Sharks-Panthers game.


Gad's picture

Thanks Tigerholic, some times one has to tip a a realist and not on hope alone

mark ashford's picture

Newbie & Dragons Fanboy
Guys don't ever think your posts are too long or that nobody is interested. I for one (and I'm sure there are many) enjoy the read and admire the effort you guys put in. The tips, the stats, the analysis all makes for a good read. Keep up the good work!
Not sure about your song, I'll have another listen to make sure.

The Thinker's picture

I agree with Mark Ashford....always a good read for those who are keen to read them.

mark ashford's picture

The Butcher
I've made a firm decision to stop defending Rocket & Tiger those two boys are big enough and ugly enough (look at Rockets posts) to take care of themselves. From here on in it's just footy talk from me.

tigerholic's picture

Evening Folks
Have put my tips in early as I now have to look at a car with my son tomorrow after golf.

There has been a fair bit of peer pressure this week from a certain tipster and I have tried hard to ignore that for the most part.

I deliberated over a few tips and I will be either an NRL genius or a muppet come Sunday night.

Enjoy the rest of your week folks and enjoy the footy. May your team win by how many it is necessary to get over the line.

Butcher, if you are reading this mate I hope all is well. Sometimes we can get off the track of footy talk and delve into little digs at one and other. I for one would like to say that everyone on this site is entitled to have their opinion, follow the team of their choice, have the number plates of their choice and of course everyone is entitled to enjoy being a part of this great site.

I hope you take this the right way mate, look forward to hearing from you real soon.


Dragons-fanboy's picture

Mark and Thinker,

I really appreciate providing everyone on here with my input and analysis on the NRL games every week to support my tips. I will never stop and will keep going! I enjoy doing it and to also read everyone's comments and inputs. I feel honoured to being able to contribute to this site the way that I do. And I know I am not alone. Newbie pours his time and effort into his analysis too.


tigerholic's picture


Everyone is waiting for your tips, don't be the last one again this week.


tigerholic's picture


I was just re -reading your pre game comments about the Broncos/Bulldogs match. The last sentence sums up the Broncos and should be written on the wall in their change room.
"Bulldogs have half the talent but twice the heart".

Looking at the Bronco's roster and yes they have a few out and one of those in David Fifita they have a great level of youth and talent but they need to read that comment over and over again.

I still think they will turn things around and get a win over the doggies.

Have a great Thursday


The Thinker's picture

I stumbled across this statistic this morning...and I liked it.

38 players have played 300 or more premiership games in their careers. If the Storm beat the Raiders, Cameron Smith will have WON 300 premiership games in his career.

newbie from perth's picture

@ Mr Ashford
Thanks for the kind words brother. Yeah, there is a lot of work involved but it’s something I enjoy and like to do. Pretty sure my mate DFB does it for the same reasons. Now as far as my SOTW goes, yeah, Depeche Mode is not everyone’s cup of tea buddy. For me personally, I love that song. Can’t quite believe it’s 30 years old 😱. Cheers bro’.

@ The Boss
Thanks to you brother for the kind words. You know I only do it to attract more visits for your site don’t you? 😁 Great stats with Cam Smith but what else would you expect from the legend he is. Cheers.

Another nice post mate. If you’re anything like me I bet you’re a “talker” in real life. I know people have said to me that I never shut up and maybe that trait just migrates over to the written word. I can tell you I’ve kissed the Blarney Stone in Ireland which is supposed to give you the “gift of the gab” as they say. Who knows eh? Anyway, thanks for the great read my literary brother 💪. Cheers.

Dragons-fanboy's picture


Much appreciated mate. I'm quite the talker myself in real life too, never used to be, used to be real shy in fact, but my personality sure has shined through and I can be quite the talker, especially about my passions in which footy is one. And I think that stone has given you the gift when it comes to making posts on an NRL tipping site. Who would of known aye?😂😂😂


manyana's picture

Hi all, here are my guesses for round 9:
Warriors Toss up, and Warriors came up.
Tigers Benji is back
Broncos I'm a softie with no confidence in them.
Good luck to everyone, manyana.

Christine's picture

I am taking the same as the thinker this week except for dragon /manly i am taking manly...

BigPeteBx's picture

Good selection there Christine.
As much as they made the news this week, for the wrong reasons.
But a few others who follow opposite clubs, made a comment when speaking with them down the CBD.
As much as we hate Manly, maybe Blake was just letting the refs know how they are performing to date. We'll call it a Performance Appraisal.

Annesley nailed it in this weeks media. But one word, got Blake into hotter water and it wasn't that word that rhymes with rugby's ruck.
But it did start with "r".

Keep well
Big Pete

BigPeteBx's picture

Evenin Manyana - if they are guesses they are good ones -again.
No 4 at Roar (rhymes).

Cheers and keep well. If ever u r over at Avondale Meats, let Wendy & Greg (lovely couple) know that we converse, with a lot of Thinking at Thinkers.

Cheers - Big Pete

Steel Panther's picture

Big Pete...looks like the A-League restart may not happen with the problems in Victoria. A real pity given the preparation to date.

Manly on the end of another bad call last week. Focus taken away by Blake's antics.

Hope you are well

Christine's picture

Baggy what are tour girls tipping this week ...

a's picture

The cowboys defence is poor

Baggy_Gee's picture

They are off with their grand parents this week, and I didn't want to distract from that time away. They have my tips this week simply by dint of nepotism.

NuL1F3's picture

I too have to give it up to Newbie and DFB for your in depth posts, along with The Thinkers tips, I wait to read what you fine folk have to say before picking my 8.

Nice SOTW Newbie, one of my favourite from them would have to be:
More and more relevant every year unfortunately.


mark ashford's picture

Newbie & NuL1fe
Ok you guys have convinced me on Depeche Mode, not saying I'm a fan but nice listening none the less.
You have expressed an interest in living in one of our southern asian neighbours so thought I'd put this up.

mark ashford's picture

Big Pete
Hope you are well and not freezing to death out there in Bathurst.
I have to echo Steels post about the last few minutes of the Manly game. It may not have changed the result but it may have just sent the game into extra time, and who knows?
Time has come for my Broncs to step up and reclaim some respect.
Don't know if it will happen this week as the Doggies are improving each week. Good luck to your Eagles, they should win.

BigPeteBx's picture

Good evening Steely for a nice brisk Friday mate.
I saw this morning, where Victorian A-League teams, have been cleared to enter NSW for next weeks re-start of comp.
Should be a good one next Friday, with me Smurfs up against The Nix.

I'll reserve my thoughts about our last two NRL matches. A ref I know here locally, reckons we were dudded, as even he's watched that one very slowly. But we survive and Blakey did a Blakey and he's wearin it.

Not too bad otherwise, mate and thanks for asking. At least upright, but painful on the ankle, even with a brace. I've been reading about injuries in sport and NRL players are showing up again with ankles and recurring injury to that element of the body. I often wonder with the boots worn and the ones we wore in ball-game sports, how easy it is to roll them - thus sprain/twist and more. My basketball days were a little different and still remember the Puma's I had. Of all things, red and white

Cheers Champ and keep well
Big Pete


NRL tipping is easier if you follow the NRL news