The final match on Sunday afternoon has the recently improved Broncos travel to Brookvale Oval to play the Sea Eagles at home in Manly.
After a dismal start to the season Brisbane have shown huge progress over the last month winning their past three consecutive games including their 20 – 4 victory ahead of the Sharks last week. The Broncos also managed big wins ahead of two of the best in the competition, defeating the Storm and the Titans showing they do have skill and depth.
But beating Many at Brookvale is always a hard task for them, so if the Broncos are to stay in the top eight they really need to give it everything they’ve got this week.
The Sea Eagles have enjoyed some great success this season, enough to see them rise to number two on the ladder after their close 24 – 20 win ahead of the Cowboys last week.
With the home ground advantage and their more consistent season, Manly are the favourites here currently paying $1.52 through Ladbrokes.com.au. And, despite their recent string of successes Brisbane are sitting at the generous odds of $2.60.
The Broncos are in great form with Ben Te’o, Corey Parker and skipper Darren Lockyer all playing brilliantly of late, but will they be rattled after the news of the flying Israel Folau abandoning them in favour of a lucrative AFL deal?
The Sea Eagles, however, are still without instrumental captain Jamie Lyon (ankle) who really is the driving force of their success so far this year. And with Steve Matai also out on suspension and Manly struggling to put in a full 80 minutes lately, an upset looks on the cards.
Keiran Foran does return from injury for the Sea Eagles on Sunday, but it just doesn’t look to be enough especially considering he will be playing in the centres instead of his favoured five-eighth position.
We are going against the grain here and saying that Brisbane can and will win. Although they won last week, Manly barely held off a late surge from the Cowboys and the home ground advantage means less considering they lost to the Eels at home in Round 10.
Current Head-to-Head Odds: Sea Eagles $1.52 – Broncos $2.60 Ladbrokes.com.au
Round 13 Sea Eagles Team:
1. Ben Farrar 2. Michael Robertson 3. Dean Whare 4. Kieran Foran 5. Tony Williams 6. Chris Bailey 7. Trent Hodkinson 8. Jason King (c) 9. Matt Ballin 10. Josh Perry 11. Anthony Watmough 12. Shane Rodney 13. Glenn Stewart
Bench: 14. Joe Galuvao 15. Brent Kite 16. Matt Cross 17. George Rose
Reserve: 18. Terence Seu Seu
Round 13 Broncos Team:
1. Josh Hoffman 2. Antonio Winterstein 3. Alex Glenn 4. Israel Folau 5. Jharal Yow Yeh 6. Darren Lockyer (c) 7. Peter Wallace 8. Shane Tronc 9. Andrew McCullough 10. Lagi Setu 11. Ben Te’o 12. Sam Thaiday 13. Corey Parker
Bench: 14. Ben Hunt 15. Matt Gillett 16. Mitchell Dodds 17. Ashton Sims