Tigers Look to Get Back On Track

Picture: Mark Evans/heraldsun.com.au
Picture: Mark Evans/heraldsun.com.au
Panthers v Tigers

Both of these sides have made a slow start to the 2012 season, with the Panthers  having won just two of their opening six matches, while the Tigers  have collected just one win. Penrith will be looking to bounce back from a humiliating 30-0 loss to defending Premiers Manly on Monday night, while the Tigers were lucky to only lose by four against the Broncos in round 6.

History – Penrith have dominated meetings between these sides at home, winning eight of the eleven matches played there. Wests won the most recent, late last season however, to extend their winning sequence against the Panthers to three.

Dangermen – Five-eight Travis Burns  has been in sparkling form for the hosts this season, scoring four tries in the opening six matches. He is a real threat when running the ball.

Everyone know how good Lote Tiquiri  can be when he is on song and it is time he stepped up and led by example for his younger teammates. With a couple of games under his belt since returning from injury, he should be ready to fire.

Prediction – Both of these sides have struggled this season but it is the Tigers who have the most improvement in them. They are a team that can blow hot and cold, but there were some signs that they are about to turn the corner against the Broncos last week and they should be too good here. Tigers 13+

Sharks v Eels

The Sharks  have stunned everyone by win four of their opening six matches and deservingly go into this match against one of the competition’s underachievers as favourites. Injured fullback Nathan Gardner has been replaced by Matthew Wright for the hosts, while Esi Tonga returns for Parramatta  after being a late withdrawal against the Knights last week.

History – The Sharks have dominated recent meetings between these sides, winning five of the past seven, although the Eels scored a 40-6 win in the only meeting between the sides last year.

Dangermen – Star recruit Todd Carney  has been at the heart of the Sharks revival this season and has been growing in confidence with Jeff Robson outside him. He is always a danger running the ball and won’t be afraid to take the line on.

Jarryd Hayne  is the one man that can turn a game for the Eels. If given any space, he will make the opposition pay.

Prediction – The Sharks have been one of the form teams this campaign and should have too much class for the Eels, who are still yet to click this season. Sharks 1-12

Warriors v Rabbitohs

This match brings together two teams going in opposite directions. The Warriors  have slipped to thirteenth on the ladder courtesy of three defeats in their past four matches, while the Rabbitohs  have a narrow loss to the Broncos and wins over the Tigers and Bulldogs to show for their last three weeks work.

History – The Warriors have dominated meetings between these sides at Mt Smart Stadium, collecting eight wins from twelve matches, including a 12-6 win here in round eleven last season. That victory was the first of a double against Souths in 2011.

Dangermen – The showdown between rival wingers Manu Vatuvei  and Andrew Everingham  in this match will be one to savour. Vatuvei has established himself as one of the best in the game, while Everingham has burst onto the scene with six tries in just four first grades games.

Prediction – The return of Kevin Locke should see the Warriors improve on last week’s 20 point defeat by the Bulldogs, but the Rabbitohs are starting to hit top gear. Rabbitohs 1-12

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