Ben Hunt replaces the injured Peter Wallace at halfback for the Broncos. Image courtesy of: foxsports.com.au
Brisbane v Manly
Brisbane’s Suncorp Stadium plays host to the annual NRL double header this Friday night with the Broncos and Manly kicking off proceedings. Brisbane will sorely miss playmaker Peter Wallace who left the field with a groin injury in last weekend’s loss to the Warriors. Ben Hunt replaces Wallace in Brisbane’s starting lineup making way for former Rabbitohs and Titans utility Luke Capewell to make his Broncos debut. David Williams returns on the wing for the Sea Eagles after missing last week’s win over Canberra.
History – Manly boast an impressive record against the Broncos recording six wins from their past eight games. The Sea Eagles knocked Brisbane out of the grand final qualifier last year on their way to winning the 2011 premiership. Suncorp Stadium is beginning to return to its fortress status for the Broncos with the Brisbane boys recording twelve wins from their past thirteen games at home.
Dangermen – Sea Eagles custodian Brett Stewart has been on fire and looks to have played himself into a blues jersey since returning from ongoing rib and knee injuries. Broncos fullback Josh Hoffman has been undoubtedly Brisbane’s most consistent performer all season, look for him to loom up inside Corey Norman or Ben Hunt early on.
Prediction – Peter Wallace is a massive loss for the young Broncos, Wallace’s guidance and compsoure is sure to be missed. The Sea Eagles are showing signs of brilliance from last season and should be too strong in a close finish. Manly 1-12 .
Bulldogs v Titans
A number of State of Origin jerseys are up for grabs, both Maroon and Blue when the Bulldogs lock horns with the Titans in Friday’s second game of the annual Suncorp Stadium doubleheader. The Bulldogs are unchanged from the side that humiliated Parramatta last week while the Titans welcome back Will Zillman who replaces Phil Graham at fullback.
History – The Bulldogs have had the upper hand over the titans in recent outings recording three wins from their past four games. The two sides have met three times at Suncorp Stadium resulting in two Bulldogs victories and one for the Titans. The Titans are struggling in Friday night football winning just two of their past ten games under Friday night lights.
Dangermen – Bulldogs centre Josh Morris is flying. Morris has scored eight tries this season three of which were the first of the game. The bulldogs centre three quarter loves playing at Suncorp and has scored six tries in his past five appearances. Titans winger David Mead is the Titans leading tryscorer this season, expect him to go looking for the ball early.
Prediction – This game will decided between the two star-studded forward packs. Both teams have the luxury of quality backrows and interchange players. Expect the Titans to come out swinging, with the Bulldogs running away with the game. Bulldogs 13+ .
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