Round 9 Preview: 11 in the top 8?

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Kim Jong Dan
Staff member
Tipping Member
My current record continues to come along in leaps and bounds with only 1 shady week so far. This week I managed to tip 5 out of 7 which is good enough for me.

The problem is that it just isn’t getting any easier. Every team in the competition bar the Knights have been on both sides of a thrashing. Tipsters and article writers a like are singing the same tune but starting to sound like a broken record, each and every week declaring that “This is the closest the comp has ever been�. If that’s the case then the Knights must be very un-happy missing out on a slice of that pie.

Former powerhouses such as the Roosters and Bulldogs are struggling to stay in touch but you would imagine the return of some of their stars will move them in the right direction. There is plenty of time left with 2/3 of the season still to come, which leaves plenty of room for the struggling teams to make their move toward the top.

Game 1: Dragons vs Rabbitohs

I don’t think a whole lot needs to be said about this game. The Dragons were not great on Sunday and were lucky to come up with a win over the Tigers who put in a powerful and skilful performance.

The Dragons have lost their halfback Head and this could damage their prospects but they have enough players to back-up and cover the gaps.
They will also have a number of players backing up from the City vs Country Origin match the day before.

The Rabbitohs have started to slide back into the form they have been known for over the past few years. They have moment of attacking brilliance, but these are not backed up by moments of defensive brilliance. They have an advantage with HEAD out and the players backing up for the Dragons but not enough to see them through, I feel.

Further news is that halfback Joe Williams has been dropped to Premier League for this week, this could go either way for them.

Daniel’s Tip: Dragons

Game 2: Panthers vs Raiders

An interesting game to say the least . Both teams are capable of losing and bombing this game.

The Raiders only just managed to sneak a win over the hapless Knights on Sunday, coming away with a win at 14-10, in a tight battle. This suggests the Raiders may be ready to crumble, but you just never know in this competition. They have been and are missing some key players and once they are back they may start to perform well again, as they did in the earlier games this season.

The Panthers played out an arm wrestle of a match, where the leader changed with almost every try. In the end the Panthers came through victorious but the Warriors had 2 tries disallowed and one of those right on the buzzer.

The Panthers are starting to find a little form again and I can see them coming good and making inroads into the top 8. However this week they have a number of players including Preston Campbell in the test match on Friday night and backing up may hurt them.

Daniel’s Tip: Panthers, in the dieing minutes

Game 3: Sharks vs Warriors

The Warriors were unlucky not to win on Sunday, when they had 2 tries disallowed, which would have won them the game. Their home games are formidable, however they are still often tough opponent on their own turf.
They have a completely fresh team and this will likely see them through in this game where some of the sharks players will be backing up from rep duties.

The sharks are really shaping up as contenders this year and look like they may have the goods to get their first ever title. They still have some big obstacles to overcome but in this competition they aren’t alone.
Kimmorly is playing some of the best football of his career and his open play kicking is amazing to say the least. Players like Covell and peachy are really stepping up also and adding to their strength across the entire field.
Their defence has been outstanding this year and it looks like the investment in ET as defensive coach has really paid off.

Daniel’s Tip: Sharks

Game 4: Broncos vs Bulldogs

The Block buster game of the round.
The Broncos systematically smashed the Sea Eagles last week in a display of dominance and pure football brilliance. The forwards were dominated and the backline took advantage, finding holes everywhere and crossing the try line at every opportunity. It was amazing and horrible to see at the same time.

The Bulldogs convincingly beat the Eels who were looking like finally getting their topsy-turvy season under way. They ran in 30 – 16 winners in the end, with Anasta leading the way.
He is really starting to lead the team around the park and makes a difference every time he takes the lead. Even without some of their stars he is able to push the team ahead and get them across the line.

The battle between Lockyer and Anasta will be one not to be missed and the winner of this battle will surely win the war on the field.

Daniel’s Tip: Broncos

Game 5: Eels vs Cowboys

Each game just gets harder to predict. The inconsistent form of the Eels is making them hard to pick and hard to pick against. The Cowboys certainly are on fire at the moment and sitting at the top of the 5 teams in first with a better for and against than the others in this lot.

The Eels have managed to pull off some classy and exciting wins this year with a very strong team who seem to click then realise what they have done and unhinge themselves. Grothe out on the wing is an outstanding player, his size and power would be welcomed at any club, especially when you add his speed to that list as well. Tahu is also playing well but has been quiet and their usual lot keep performing week in and week out. Once they find some cohesiveness they will be a force to be reckoned with in this comp.

The Cowboys are playing well both at home and away. They extended their record to 9 home games in a row at home and when playing there any team should be worried. However they aren’t at home and they have to play the Eels who I feel could put one over on the Cowboys and really need to, to keep in touch with the competition leaders.

Daniel’s Tip: Cowboys but the Eels will be and even money bet for mine

Game 6: Roosters vs Knights

I would like to feel sorry for the Knights but I just can’t find any reason to. I don’t like them, I never have and never will. They keep coming close to a win but just not getting across the line and this constant heart break makes every loss by Manly that much more acceptable.

They seem to have actually been playing OK without Joey Johns but not enough to win games. They will surprise a team or 2 this season but I think the teams they will surprise will be teams like the Rabbitohs and lesser-ranked opposition.

The Roosters are another team struggling to find form. Fittler was very valuable to them and the lack of leadership across the park has really started to take its toll. Finch is clearly too young and will need to step up soon. Finch is out for a further week and coach Stuart has looked to the 20 year old gun half Soward to fill his boots. Whilst he is rumoured to be a fantastic halfback produced by the Raiders, he is still young and the lack of leadership could cost them dearly in this game.

Daniel’s Tip: Roosters in a tight one.

Game 7: Sea Eagles vs West Tigers

The Sea Eagles have been hit hard by injuries to key forwards and have 3 players backing up from Rep duties on Friday Night. King still has an injury shadow over him and is unlikely to back up. Beaver and Watmough should be ok but tired. Added to the injuries in the forward, prop Kylie Leuluai has been suspended for 2 weeks for a high tackle in last weeks game. This means Manly will be going in with a largely inexperienced forward pack, and may struggle to dominate where they have previously this season.
This means some younger less experienced players will need to step up and take charge, whilst other players will need to switch and move positions to fill in the gaps that are left.
This will have a massive effect on the game, and instead of being a push over for the Eagles this may become a game they get bundled into and lament later in the season.

The Tigers lost last week but lost in a game that they were in right until the very end. They played very well and were unfortunate not to walk away with a win.

There are rumours around the trap that Marshall may not play due to a flair up of his shoulder injury that kept him out of a number of games earlier on in the season. This will be a big blow to the team and their confidence, as they haven’t won many without this child prodigy.
The Tigers have blinding pace out wide and they will look to expose the slower backline of the Sea Eagles and also try to break up the middle of the ruck, much like they did in the trial match before the seasons start.

In all this will be a great match, one that both teams are worried about. The loss of players to the Eagles will hurt them but the Home crowd will lift them to a win.

Daniel’s Tip: Sea Eagles

Chip and Chase

True Supporter
Staff member
Premium Member
Tipping Member
My short and sweet read

Souths v Dragons

Head, Cooper and Gasnier out for Dragons. Hornby, Barrett, Creagh, Bailey and Ryles backing up from Friday night. Williams gone and Hegarty back for Bunnies. Think this one might be close depending on how the rep players pull up for Saints. I would not be surprised if Bunnies got up, their backline looks a lot classier on paper (outside of 5/8 anyway) and they are due after some disappointing performances of late. They are coming off the bye though, which has proved to be a mixed blessing. I'll go for a bit of an upset and say the Bunnies.

Panthers v Raiders

You'd have to say Penrith at first glance. Although Jason Smith is listed for the Raiders this week, but whether he plays remains to be seen. Woolford is back as well. I think the Panthers at home will be too strong. However if Gower or Campbell don't pull up from Friday, and Smith plays it could be interesting.

Sharks v Warriors

Unfortunately the Sharks keep winning matches and playing some pretty good footy. The Warriors continue their enigmatic form of the last two years. However Stevens and Covell face a marathon journey from Lismore to Perth inside 24 hours to make the game, whether the club calls on their services remains to be seen. If it is a tight game Covells goal kicking could be handy. As the Warriors are like Forrest Gumps box of chocolates you'd have to take the Sharks.

Broncos v Bulldogs

If the Broncos start like they did against us and get that much ball then they will be up by 30 at halftime again. The Bulldogs are just struggling along, well below the form that took them all the way in 2004. The Broncos must be loving having a representative game on this weekend that has no effect on their preparation, whilst the Dogs have a few backing up. Look forward to the battle of the centres, with Berrigan and Hodges against Lolesi and Tonga. I'd have to say the Broncos at home.

Eels v Cowboys

The jury is still out on the Eels in my opinion, but I don't think they have reached full potential yet either. The Cowboys have their first string backline in tact again, save for Smith at 5/8. Cowboys away from home worries me a little, but they are playing with confidence and have some spectacular runners of the football in their team. Parra better watch Jensen, Sing and Payne from dummy half. I'll say the Cowboys.

Roosters v Knights

The Roosters go for their 68th halves combination for the season in this game. The Knights have a smattering of players back but still don't look strong. Buderus holds the key for them at the moment. I feel like they have got to break their duck soon but don't think it will be this week, if it was at Newcastle, maybe. The Roosters have only won one from their last six, and don't we love it. However they will make it 2 from 7 this week.

Sea Eagles v Tigers

Tough game given the decimated front row for Manly. The Tigers are a force to be reckoned with and have some decent scalps on their belt. They play an expansive game so Manlys outside backs better make sure of their defence. Also lets hope our performance under the high ball is better this week as they love bombing for Patty Richards. Being back at The Fortress is the key and Manly will erase the memory of last week with a solid win.


Kim Jong Dan
Staff member
Tipping Member
nice C&C but i like my long winded version.

By the way Gasnier probably will play for the dragons this week, he just didnt want to hold onto a rep spot if he may not have played so gave someone else a go.


Journey Man
I have to say this week is one of the easiest to pick on paper for a while

This worries me - it think it could be a low scoring round in the tipping comp - maybe time to make a move


Kim Jong Dan
Staff member
Tipping Member
yup I think I will only get about 3 this week. Its easy to do on paper which means that any team could win it :D


Journey Man
Well our tipping comp leader has 35 right from 56 - 62.5% or 4.375 per game.

Not the best, lol and the leader at work here has 36.

So it seems to be consistant

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