The State Of Origin Game 1 opener took place on Wednesday night with Queensland scoring a gritty 11 – 10 win over New South Wales and now the rep stars who played in the clash back-up in their respective club teams in Round 12 of the 2015 NRL Telstra Premiership.
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A Cooper Cronk field goal six minutes from full time secured the Maroons’ win in the first of three Origin showdowns this season, Queensland looking to win back the shield after the Blues ended their rival’s record eight-straight winning streak in 2014 with a 2 – 1 series success.
Now the Origin recovery period kicks off ahead of Game 2, played at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on mutual territory where the series could be decided with another Queensland victory, and in Round 12 how well the Origin players back-up is key to their team’s chances across the seven scheduled showdowns.
Two teams have a bye this week with the Canterbury Bulldogs and Wests Tigers enjoying a rest while the 14 remaining teams in the competition take to the field.
Undoubtedly the highlight of the round is the last game on the card with Allianz Stadium hosting Monday night’s blockbuster between the defending premiers the Sydney Roosters and current ladder-leaders the Melbourne Storm who welcome back their backbone including Maroons’ skipper Cameron Smith who won Man of the Match for his performance in Origin Game 1.
Check out the full 2015 Round 12 preview below to see who to back and who to sack online at Ladbrokes.com.au who are offing a NRL Cash Back offer this weekend if your team scores 20+ points but lose!
NRL Round 12 Draw
Friday May 29, 2015
Penrith Panthers ($1.36) vs Parramatta Eels ($3.25)
Pepper Stadium (7:45pm)
Really hard to see the Eels, sitting bottom of the ladder and playing like they deserve to stay there, beat the Panthers at home who are eighth on the ladder and welcome Jamie Soward back to five-eighth.
Saturday May 30, 2015
Gold Coast Titans ($2.55) vs South Sydney Rabbitohs ($1.52)
Cbus Super Stadium (3:00pm)
Could go down to the wire with the Titans a nice value bet based on how strong they can play at home, and the Bunnies could be playing without Greg Inglis who had tonsillitis last week before Origin so big danger for Souths here. They remain the classier of the two by far though so could still salute.
Canberra Raiders ($1.92) vs Brisbane Broncos ($1.92)
GIO Stadium (5:30pm)
The Broncos were big odds to beat the Knights last weekend without their six Origin stars but they did it by a decent margin too. This week the star six are back, hopefully not too bruised and battered post-Wednesday night. The odds on the match are even though with the Raiders untouched by Origin and with the home ground advantage.
North Queensland Cowboys ($1.30) vs Manly Sea Eagles ($3.70)
1300 Smiles Stadium (7:30pm)
The Cowboys were another Queensland club to dig deep last week without their big name players including skipper Johnathan Thurston who was in camp Origin but even with JT and co. they managed to score their club record eighth straight victory. Now they attempt number nine and play one of the easiest teams to beat in the comp, plus play at Townsville, they’ll get all the money.
Sunday May 31, 2015
New Zealand Warriors ($1.30) vs Newcastle Knights ($3.60)
Mt Smart Stadium (2:00pm)
The Knights lost lots of respective last week when they failed to beat the depleted Broncos outfit. This week they travel across the ditch to NZ and take on the Warriors in a tough match where the visitors will be at long odds. Newcastle have celebrated just one win since Round 4 and face New Zealand who are fresh off a bye.
St George Illawarra Dragons vs Cronulla Sutherland Sharks
WIN Jubilee Stadium (4:00pm)
Defensively the Dragons have been one of the season’s best and their third spot on the ladder is their reward. They have won eight from their past nine and play at home this weekend against the Sharks who are also no dummies of late with four wins from six but probably not threatening enough to beat St George this weekend.
Monday June 1, 2015
Sydney Roosters ($1.57) vs Melbourne Storm ($2.40)
Spruiked as the match of the round, the Chooks have been playing some very patchy footy in 2015 and could struggle to stop Melbourne from winning again after the Storm beat the Tri-Colours back in Round 7. Melbourne welcome back Slater, Cooper and Smith and those three should be enough to tip the visitors in a close game.
*All odds quoted are provided by Ladbrokes.com.au and subject to change