We are now two months into the 2013 NRL Telstra Premiership and after seven rounds of the teams finding their feet the top chances in the competition are starting to make themselves known.
This weekend we are treated to another eight clashes for Round 8 starting with a cracker at Suncorp Stadium tonight with the in-form Brisbane Broncos hosting the second best team in the competition – the South Sydney Rabbitohs.
Upset Tip of the Week: Titans ($2.60) to beat Warriors ($1.52) in New Zealand on Sunday
Brisbane have won their past three on the trot, including their 20-10 win over Wests last Saturday, moving themselves into sixth place on the NRL Ladder, have the home ground advantage and boast an impressive 9-2 advantage at the old Lang Park over the Bunnies.
But there’s a downside for the Queensland crew here as they lost both Justin Hodges (groin) and strong forward Josh McGuire (calf) this week.
Souths meanwhile have lost just one game this time in when the reigning Premiers the Melbourne Storm got the better of them in round six and will be brimful of confidence after running away with a 20 – 12 win over Manly at Brookvale last Friday night scoring all of their tries in the second half.
So do you go with the stats and the Broncos’ heart? Probably not with those recent withdrawals.
There’s no other real block buster on this week’s card with no other two from the Top 8 facing off this week.
Melbourne, easy 28 – 18 winners over the Warriors last week, look set to tighten their stranglehold over the title playing the 10th placed Canberra Raiders at AAMI Park on Saturday night, the Green Machine coming off a devastating 30 – 12 loss to the North Queensland Cowboys seven days prior.
The Cowboys meanwhile are just hanging onto eighth position thanks to that win after their narrow loss the previous round (six) to their big brothers in Brisbane going down by just two points in a 12 – 10 blockbuster.
This week they take on the out of form Parramatta Eels, 15th at the moment and looking like scoring a second straight Wooden Spoon, who were thrashed by the Panthers on Monday night.
Penrith are one of this season’s most unimpressive outfits even after posting 44 points on the Eels in Round 7 and will likely struggle to stay in touch with the Sydney Roosters on Sunday arvo with the Chooks sitting pretty in third spot overall after thrashing the Dragons 34 – 10 in the Anzac Day clash last Thursday.
The only other real game of note involves St George this week with the Red V’s hosting Manly on Monday night, Dragons desperate to get their season back on track.
The full NRL Round 8 draw is listed below complete with match times, locations and head-to-head odds on all the teams so you know who to back and who to sack this week.
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2013 NRL Round 8 Draw & Odds
Friday May 3, 2013
Suncorp Stadium (7:35pm)
ANZ Stadium (7:35pm)
Saturday May 4, 2013
AAMI Park (5:30pm)
Parramatta Stadium (7:30pm)
Sunday May 5, 2013
Mt. Smart Stadium (2:00pm)
Hunter Stadium (2:00pm)
Allianz Stadium (3:00pm)
Monday May 6, 2013
WIN Jubilee Oval (7:00pm)
*All times quoted are local
*All odds quoted are provided by bookmaker.com.au and subject to change