The Easter long weekend is here and Round 7 of the NRL 2017 Telstra Premiership includes plenty of top Rugby League action to get you through the four days.
Upset NRL Round 7 Tip: Tigers to beat the Eels @ $2.25 – Ladbrokes.com.au
Things kick off with a Good Friday triple headed starting in Sydney with the Bulldogs v Bunnies clash at ANZ Stadium.
Newcastle are at big NRL odds at home to defeat the Sydney Roosters, the Chooks desperate to return to winning form after back-to-back losses.
The other Friday night footy features plays out a Suncorp Stadium with the Brisbane Broncos clear favourites to hold off the out-of-form Titans in a Queensland Derby.
On Saturday Manly host the second-ranked Melbourne Storm at Brookvale, before the Raiders host the NZ Warriors at GIO Stadium in Canberra.
The round highlight though is undoubtedly the ladder-leading Dragons taking on the fifth-placed Cowboys, North Queensland coming off hard loss to the Tigers last week.
NRL ROUND 7
Canterbury Bulldogs ($1.82) vs South Sydney Rabbitohs ($2.05)
Friday April 14, 2017 (4:00pm) – ANZ Stadium
The Bulldogs come off back-to-back wins after their big win over Manly last weekend and are narrow favourites to beat Souths who beat Penrith by one point last Friday night. It is a fierce rivalry between these two Sydney footy clubs – including the 2014 NRL Grand Final (won by the Bunnies). Adam Reynolds scored the field goal to get Souths across last weekend, but the credit had to go to Cody Walker. He’ll be key to this game again. The Doggies’ forward pack is superior, but think there’s a definite chance for the Rabbitohs to make it two on the trot with an upset.
- Tip: Rabbitohs by 4 – Ladbrokes.com.au
Newcastle Knights ($3.90) vs Sydney Roosters ($1.28)
Friday April 14, 2017 (6:00pm) – McDonald Jones Stadium
The Knights sit last on the ladder and are looking at a fifth loss on the trot. They’re likely to be handed that with the once top-of-the-table Roosters out for atonement after back-to-back losses including to the Broncos last Thursday night. Newcastle meanwhile went down to Canterbury, but looked a better team than the disappointing Chooks in Round 6. That said, the stats for the Knights winning at home when underdogs is poor (1 of their past 13) and can’t see them turning that around here.
- Tip: Sydney by 12 – Ladbrokes.com.au
Brisbane Broncos ($1.18) vs Gold Coast Titans ($5.25)
Friday April 14, 2017 (7:50pm) – Suncorp Stadium
It’s a beauty for the Brisbane footy fans on Friday night at the old Lang Park with the Broncos hosting little brothers the Gold Coast. Brisbane returned to winning form last Thursday night roasting the Chooks and come into this full of confidence. The Titans sit 15th on the ladder after three straight losses and were smashed 42 – 16 by the Raiders last weekend. Brisbane are tough in defence, at home and have the far superior record over the Titans – 16 to 5 from 21 played. The home side are missing Hunt, which they’ll feel, but still cannot see the Gold Coast even coming.
- Tip: Brisbane by 13+ – Ladbrokes.com.au
Manly Sea Eagles ($2.40) vs Melbourne Storm ($1.60)
Saturday April 15, 2017 (3:00pm) – Brookvale Oval
The Sea Eagles were tipped to hand it to St George but last week, but instead lost 35 – 10 at Brookvale. They return there for this tough clash with the Storm who are second on the ladder after losing for the first time in 2017 last Sunday in a shock 2 – 11 upset to the Sharks. They’re on the shorter turnaround and away from home, but are still clear favourites for the win. It’ll be a battle of the halfbacks with Cherry-Evans v Cronk. The home advantage is negated by the 2017 stats that show Melbourne winning both Sydney matches, while Manly are only 1-3 at Brookie. Sticking with the Storm.
- Tip: Melbourne by 12 – Ladbrokes.com.au
Canberra Raiders ($1.33) vs New Zealand Warriors ($3.40)
Saturday April 15, 2017 (5:30pm) – GIO Stadium
The Raiders are into the Top 6 after winning their past two on the trot highlighted by the big 42 – 16 win over the Gold Coast last week. They’re the deserving favourites to beat the Warriors who are also shooting for a third straight win. The Kiwis were good defeating the Eels at Mt Smart last Sunday, but away from home against the Green Machine who have been beating some tough competition they’re likely to struggle.
- Tip: Raiders by 13+ – Ladbrokes.com.au
St George Illawarra Dragons ($1.36) vs North Queensland Cowboys ($3.25)
Saturday April 15, 2017 (7:30pm) – WIN Stadium
St George have been the surprise package of the 2017 NRL Season so far and sit top of the table with five wins from six played, including their last four straight. Last weekend they easily accounted for Manly (35 – 10) as underdogs, but won’t be found at long odds here. NQ boys are at a blowout price travelling to Sydney after being beaten by 10 at home by Wests last Saturday. Without JT it was hard going for the Cowboys and the star halfback is missing here again, which explains the price. The Dragons are not without their own injury woes so also have to dig deep, but should be able to beat the depleted Cowboys.
- Tip: Dragons by 10 – Ladbrokes.com.au
Penrith Panthers ($1.75) vs Cronulla Sharks ($2.15)
Sunday April 16, 2017 (4:00pm) – Pepper Stadium
The Panthers have won their past two games, but it was only a field goal separating them from the Bunnies last week. They’re favourites at Pepper Stadium to stop the Sharks from making it four on the trot after the reigning Premiers moved into third spot thanks to their 11 – 2 win over the Storm in Melbourne last Sunday. Boosting the home side squad is the return of captain Matt Moylan, while the Sharks are missing the injured James Segeyaro (broken arm). Won’t be much in the finish, but the Cronulla outfit looks overs.
- Tip: Sharks by 6 – Ladbrokes.com.au
Parramatta Eels ($1.68) vs Wests Tigers ($2.25)
Monday April 17, 2017 (4:00pm) – ANZ Stadium
The traditional Easter Monday clash pits the Eels against the Tigers in an all-Western Sydney derby, the latter getting away with a win over the Cowboys who lost Thurston last Saturday. They’re underdogs to stop Parra, despite the fact the Eels have lost their last four straight. Happy to give the Wests a go at the price with the team starting to get a bit of morale back after the horror early start to the season.
- Tip: Tigers by 12 – Ladbrokes.com.au
*All times (AEST) and odds from Ladbrokes.com.au – subject to change