NRL Round 10

Brisbane  and premiers Manly  will have a near capacity crowd at Suncorp Stadium and it should be a very tight contest in the first of the double header clashes. Brisbane lost their second match of the year in Auckland but certainly weren’t disgraced and can be expected to put in a good showing at home. It has always been said that the best bet of the year is Brisbane in the match before the first State of Origin side is selected. But Manly also has a number of Origin hopefuls for both states so the old adage may not apply this year. Injuries to Peter Wallace and Sam Thaiday could hurt the Broncos and Brisbane has to find a way of containing Daly Cherry-Evans. Brisbane 1-12

The Bulldogs  and Titans  play the second game at Suncorp and this should be a comfortable win for the “home” side Canterbury. The Dogs overcame a slow start to prove far too good for Parramatta while the Gold Coast went to golden point in the one point loss to Wests Tigers. However it’s a far too familiar story for the Titans who keep finding ways to be beaten. The Titans have players such as Jamal Idris, Nate Myles and Greg Bird seeking Origin selection while a big game from the Bulldogs’ Ben Barba could see him selected in the Maroons’ squad. Canterbury 13+

The Warriors  and Sydney Roosters  at Mount Smart Stadium should be entertaining if both sides produce their winning form of last weekend. The Warriors normally play well against Brisbane but many sides seem to struggle in the game after the Broncos. The Roosters did a good job in beating Newcastle but the Knights are playing poorly so beware of putting too much emphasis on winning form against them. The Warriors have plenty to play for and a number of their players are on origin watch. New Zealand Warriors 1-12

Newcastle  is struggling and injury to key players Kurt Gidley and Danny Buderus only compounds the problem that the Knight’s forwards are being overrun by opposition packs. Their woes won’t be helped on Saturday night at Hunter Stadium from a North Queensland side that at its best can match it with any team in the competition except Melbourne. As well, a few Cowboys’ players notably Ashley Graham, Brent Tate, Tariq Sims and James Tamou want the last chance to put their name forward to Origin selectors. The Cowboys  would seem to hold too many aces. North Queensland Cowboys 13+

The Canberra Raiders  hold an 11-4 record over Parramatta at Canberra Stadium and that record should read 12-4 come late Sunday afternoon. Parramatta  was woeful last week and maybe the rev up from disgruntled members at the club AGM during the week will spur them to a better effort in this round. However the Raiders have stuck with the same team that was unluckily beaten by Manly. Coach David Furner incurred a fine for his comments on the refereeing and the penalty count and few would argue that his case had plenty of justification. Hard to go past the Raiders at home. Canberra Raiders 13+

Cronulla’s  winning run came to a halt in Monday night’s top class game against South Sydney and it is now almost certain that their imposing run will have back to back losses come Sunday. The Melbourne Storm  really hasn’t been tested and they look head and shoulders above every other team in the comp. Cronulla will be hoping that captain Paul Gallen recovers from the knee injury and is fit to play but even with Gallen in the side the result won’t be altered. The Storm is just too strong. Melbourne Storm 13+

Monday night football is at Penrith where two of last week’s badly beaten sides, Penrith  and St George-Illawarra , do battle. Penrith’s woes are shown by the fact that star centre Michael Jennings has been dropped even though he is still regarded as a top chance of being named in the New South Wales side. The Dragons have lost their fire and without two of their best defenders - Matt Prior (suspended) and Beau Scott (shoulder injury) - they are vulnerable, but could still sneak the two points simply because of the weakness of their opponents. Not the most attractive of matches . St George-lllawarra Dragons 1-12

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