2010 NRL Round 3 Match & Betting Previews

This week we head into Round 3 of the 2010 NRL Telstra Premiership with a number of impressive teams, like the Roosters with their amazing reinvention winning two from two this season, already proving just how much they want the Grand Final win this year.

Other teams including the Cronulla Sharks, Manly Sea Eagles and surprisingly the Canterbury Bulldogs are yet to secure a win in 2010, but will this round be their turn?

For a complete run-down of all the NRL Round 2 results from last week click here.

Round 3 features another eight excellent matches detailed below.

If you fancy a bet on the NRL this round visit Ladbrokes.com.au who have the best range of betting odds and options open on the National Rugby League this week and all throughout the season ahead.

Getting in early means you will secure the highest odds and make the most profit, you can even pick the season premiers right now if you want to get behind your team early in the season!

Match 1 – Wests Tigers v Parramatta Eels

The Tigers suffered a nasty thrashing by the inform Roosters last week while the Eels are coming off a controversial four point win against Manly from Round 2. The Tigers will enjoy the home ground advantage at Sydney Football Stadium, but will still start as the underdogs after their game last week left a lot to be desired.

The Tigers have lost halfback Robert Lui who will be out for up to six weeks due to an ankle injury he sustained in their loss to the Roosters last week. Tim Motzen moves up to fill the halfback role while Mitch Brown will play in halfback position.

The game will be a sensational start to the weekend as two of footy’s hottest stars, Benji Marshall and Jarryd Hayne will come face to face, which should make for some terrific plays.

Despite Marshall’s best efforts last week, the rest of the Tigers just weren’t up there with him when needed, so it is hard to go past the Eels and Hayne here.

But the rest of Parramatta need to work too and not leave it all up to Hayne and if the Tigers can pick up their defence with the crowd behind them they may sneak in with an upset win.

Current Head-to-Head Odds: Tigers $2.35 – Eels $1.60 Ladbrokes.com.au

Match 2 – St. George Illawarra Dragons v North Queensland Cowboys

The Dragons have been on fire so far this season, with their two brilliant 2010 victories seeing them installed as the early favourites for the Premiership at $5.50 with Ladbrokes.com.au.

St. George will be hard to beat at home, but the Cowboys had an impressive 28 – 20 win against the Panthers last week and if they can get their act together right from the start and not wait to make their comeback in the second half, then they will stand some chance of knocking the Premiership favourites down a notch on Friday night at generous odds.

However, Cowboy fans jumping on their juicy odds be warned, we all know the Cowboys don’t play their best when away hence why the Dragons are the $1.33 favourites to win their third straight on Friday night.

Current Head-to-Head Odds: Dragons $1.33 – Cowboys $3.30 Ladbrokes.com.au

Match 3 – Penrith Panthers v Melbourne Storm

In the first half last week the Panthers looked set to rope in the Cowboys, leading 14 – 2 at half time, but North Queensland got the best of them in a dismal second-half for Penrith. This week Penrith have the home ground advantage and if they can keep their play consistent throughout the full 80 minutes they could be the first team to beat the reigning premiers this year.

Melbourne have won both of their matches so far, but have not been as impressive as many thought they would be and both victories have been by narrow margins.

Could be a good value game for the Panthers fans out there who think they can step up in their attack and break through the Storm’s solid defence.

Current Head-to-Head Odds: Panthers $2.05 – Storm $1.78 Ladbrokes.com.au

Match 4 – Manly Sea Eagles v Newcastle Knights

You wouldn’t have wanted to mess with Manly when the full-time whistle blew last week. They lost to the Eels by just four points after a controversial try off a forward pass was missed by the ref and touch judges and allowed – giving Parramatta the win.

This week they will be seeking revenge and the Knights happen to be the unlucky team who will feel their wrath. Also the Sea Eagles have the home ground advantage this week, another reason why they are the $1.62 favourites to win.

Knights’ second-rower Cameron Ciraldo is back in the game for the first time in 12 months after he suffered a nightmare injury in Round 2 last season.

It will still be an interesting and close game as both teams are superstars in their first 40 or so minutes of play. So, who steps up in the closing stages of the game will go home with the win and right now Manly look like getting their first win of 2010 on Saturday.

Current Head-to-Head Odds: Manly $1.62 – Knights $2.30 Ladbrokes.com.au

Match 5 – Gold Coast Titans v Canberra Raiders

Well the Titans silenced many when they proved they could win away from Skilled Park last week, but only just.  They kicked a field goal in golden point extra time defeating an increasingly deflated Rabbitohs by just one point.

The Titans will love being back at home this week and having the crowd behind them while the Raiders, who defeated the Broncos at Canberra Stadium in Round 2, will miss their home ground advantage.

The Raiders have a lot of ability when they keep their completion rate up there and plenty of size in their forward pack, but with speedy point scorers like Prince and Campbell for the Gold Coast, Canberra will really need to have a lot of attitude too.

With their confidence boosted it is hard to see the Titans going down this week and probably best to stick to the clear favourites in the betting markets in this match.

Current Head-to-Head Odds: Titans $1.28 – Raiders $3.65 Ladbrokes.com.au

Match 6 – Brisbane Broncos v New Zealand Warriors

The Broncos are another team who will be glad to be back home this week after they were well beaten by the Raiders in Round 2. The bookies are betting they will return to their best installing them as the odds-on favourites against the Warriors, despite New Zealand’s huge win over the Sharks last week.

But Brisbane have suffered a blow to their back-row loosing Corey Parker for up to six weeks after he suffered a severe strain to his knee in their loss to Canberra last week. New Zealand too have suffered a loss with their halfback Brett Seymour out for six weeks with a broken thumb.

If the Broncos, however, begin to bring the very talented Israel Folau into more of their plays then they will be putting more points on the board and winning back the love of the fans they disappointed in Round 2.

Current Head-to-Head Odds: Broncos $1.52 – Warriors $2.55 Ladbrokes.com.au

Match 7 – Canterbury Bulldogs v Sydney Roosters

Both the Bulldogs and the Roosters are currently at equal odds for a win here on Saturday night, but it is hard to see why when the Dogs are yet to win or earn any new fans this season while the Roosters have gained a whole new fan base following their impressive wins and attitude in both of their opening rounds victories.

Despite Canterbury’s home ground advantage, it is hard to go past the Chooks here as they are proving their form, skill and capacity to win by big margins making a mess of their rivals are things fans will be seeing week after week.

It’s true the Bulldogs have a lot to prove and can be brilliant defensively, but the Roosters with the likes of Pearce and Carney have the ability to put plenty of points on the board no matter the situation.

One big thing in the Bulldogs’ favour is the return of Michael Ennis – can one man make all the difference?

Current Head-to-Head Odds: Bulldogs $1.91 – Rooster $1.91 Ladbrokes.com.au

Match 8 – Cronulla Sharks v South Sydney Rabbitohs

Finally one of these two teams will secure a win for 2010, though at this point neither of them deserve it.

The Sharks are showing the same dismal form this season that saw them finish second last on the ladder last year, looking down the barrel of their 13th consecutive loss. But one of the shocks so far this year has been the disappointing performance of Rabbitohs after all their pre-season hype.

Definitely one of the hardest games of Round 3 to pick, but the Rabbitohs did show glimpses of improvement last week and the Sharks aren’t known for their attacking game or stepping up when under pressure.

A low scoring game in favour of South Sydney if the club’s big money signings Taylor and Burgess start to make an impression.

Current Head-to-Heads: Sharks $2.08 – Rabbitohs $1.75 Ladbrokes.com.au

NRL Round 2 Fixtures

Day

Date

Time (local)

Venue

Home Team

Away Team

Fri March 26 7:35pm Sydney Football Stadium, Sydney Tigers Eels
Fri March 26 8:35pm WIN Stadium, Woolongong Dragons Cowboys
Sat March 27 5:30pm CUA Stadium, Sydney Panthers Storm
Sat March 27 7:30pm Bluetongue Stadium, Gosford Sea Eagles Knights
Sat March 27 9:30pm Skilled Park, Gold Coast Titans Raiders
Sun March 28 2:00pm Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane Broncos Warriors
Sun March 28 3:00pm ANZ Stadium, Sydney Bulldogs Roosters
Mon March 29 7:00pm Toyota Stadium, Sydney Sharks Rabbitohs