2017 NRL Round 3 preview and expert tipsPosted on 15/03 by Joe Gann
Weekly Expert Betting Tips - Join our free mailing listNRL Round 3 expert tips and best bets - 2017
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Melbourne Storm v Brisbane Broncos betting
Another dominant away performance saw the Storm dispatch the Warriors with typical clinical efficiency amid atrocious weather conditions at Mt Smart. A first appearance at AAMI Park in 2017 will present the latest opportunity to extend what has been a splendid start to the new year for Craig Bellamy’s side.
Despite missing key personnel, it is difficult to spot too many weaknesses in a squad which possesses an impressive strength in depth. It was another bright start last time out and an early Kenny Bromwich try helped to lay the groundwork for the Minor Premiers to strangle the life out of the Warriors; keeping their opponents scoreless for the second 40 minutes for the second week running. In another peerless defensive display from the competition’s meanest unit,
The Victorians are picking up from where they left off in 2016. There is a strong possibility that the Storm will welcome back Billy Slater for this one; an extra boost for a side already in great shape and a chance for Cameron Munster to shine in a new role in the halves
It was yet another devastating Golden Point loss for the Broncos at the hands of the Cowboys - the fourth time in five games that these sides have entered extra time – and once more it was settled courtesy of the boot of Johnathan Thurston. In that type of mesmerising encounter, it’s a shame that one side had to come away empty handed and it was the Broncos who again saw their commendable display go unrewarded.
A positive for the Queenslanders comes in the shape of Matt Gillett who is expected to recover from the concussion he received at the Suncorp on Friday. The Cowboys game saw a big improvement from Ben Hunt after a mediocre outing in Round 1 and his kicking game will be crucial to the Broncos’ chances of imposing themselves here. The Broncos hopes of success will hinge on their ability to recover from the draining effects of last week’s high octane clash; in previous years, the hangover of those derby games has proved difficult to shake.
|Storm to win @ $1.55||$501 Bonus Bet*|
Canterbury Bulldogs v New Zealand Warriors betting
|New Zealand Warriors|
It was a breathtaking encounter at Allianz on Thursday and if the Bulldogs can reproduce that kind of commitment, they will be good value to turn over a misfiring Warriors side. Matching a terrific Roosters side with five tries apiece, it was ultimately the kicking performances of Moses Mbye and Michael Gordan that proved to be the difference.
The Dogs started and finished the game well and proved that they have the sufficient firepower to compete at the upper reaches of the competition. The right edge will be of concern defensively and although Brenko Lee has made a bright start to his Dogs career in an attacking sense, he was guilty of some poor positional errors at the other end of the field.
Still without a win this term, the situation worsened for the Canterbury club with news that Will Hopoate and Kerrod Holland will miss between four to six weeks with a fractured eye socket and a shoulder injury respectively.
This match will be played in Forsyth Barr Stadium in Dunedin after the club elected to take their home advantage to New Zealand.
The Warriors have been coming in for a lot of criticism this week on the back of a lacklustre showing in their defeat to the Storm and an away game against a battling Bulldogs side is another difficult task ahead. In the latter part of that game, the New Zealanders had shown signs of tiring after being dominated for large parts of the match and another injury to Roger Tuivasa-Sheck is a worry.
New signing Kieran Foran is free to make his debut after being cleared to play by the NRL but is still a major doubt due to an ongoing shoulder complaint. The majority of the local support will no doubt be backing the New Zealand side despite it technically being a Bulldogs home game and the situation may inadvertently sway this in favour of the Warriors.
|Warriors to win @ $1.55||$501 Bonus Bet*|
Gold Coast Titans v Parramatta Eels betting
|Gold Coast Titans|
The Titans are another side suffering from a plethora of injuries sustained yet again last weekend. Amid Karl Lawton and Anthony Don picking up shoulder injuries, the most crippling blow came from the ankle injury to Jarryd Hayne which will keep the full back out of action for between four to six weeks, missing this clash against his former club to boot. With Nathan Peats, Pat Politoni and John Oliver already on the sidelines, the Titans’ roster is set to be tested to its limits.
New Super League import Dan Sarginson is expected to make the line-up after missing out on Saturday’s loss.
The Eels are flying at the minute and an exhilarating victory over the Dragons last week showcased the free-flowing attacking football they are currently producing. A try after 38 seconds set the tone for what was to be an extremely profitable afternoon, and they proceeded to put on a masterclass to cruise to a stylish 34-16 win.
It’s hard to back against them in their current form; their forwards providing a perfect foil for one of the most potent back-lines in the competition to run riot.
|Eels to win @ $1.50||$501 Bonus Bet*|
Newcastle Knights v South Sydney Rabbitohs betting
|South Sydney Rabbitohs|
Much rejoicing at Hunter Stadium as the Knights finally put an end to a diabolical 19 game - or 335 day - losing streak. The jubilant scenes have been a long time coming and it was a fully deserved victory over the Titans that sees the Newcastle side up to the dizzy heights of eighth on this week’s rudimentary NRL ladder.
Both sides are reporting a clean bill of health for this game; an anomaly in the NRL this year. After an opening day trouncing at the hands of the Tigers, the Rabbitohs rebounded to sweep aside the Sea Eagles in Round 2. A move to full-back for Alex Johnson proved to a be a catalyst for an improved Bunnies display; bagging a satisfying pair of tries to help stake his claims for the number one jersey on a full time basis in the wake of Greg Inglis’s season-ending injury.
There were notable performances from Cody Walker and Adam Reynolds, including a try and two assists within twelve first half minutes for the former, and an assist and seven goals for the latter; contributing to an outstanding afternoon’s work as they ran out comfortable 38-18 winners.
|Rabbitohs to win @ $1.60||$501 Bonus Bet*|
Penrith Panthers v Sydney Roosters betting
This could be the blockbuster tie of Round four. The Roosters are looking irresistible going forward, but are yet to gel consistently for the full eighty minutes. Despite a strong victory last week, they showed enough defensive vulnerability against the Bulldogs to offer the Panthers encouragement here.
For the Panthers, this could be the statement win that defines how their season evolves; it is an early opportunity to lay down a marker against another of the highly fancied teams and demonstrate that they are capable of living up to their pre-season billing.
Last week’s win over the Tigers provided a much-needed response to their shock opening day defeat at the hands of the Dragons. The home advantage of Pepper Stadium may prove decisive in such a tight game – the Panthers have won nine of their last twelve games here.
Two wins from two for the Tricolours but coach Trent Robinson is refusing to get carried away by an encouraging start. In his post-match evaluation, he went as far as criticising new boy Luke Keary for a missed tackle and spilling a loose ball which led to the Bulldogs crossing for a try; despite the playmaker putting in a man of the match display in which he provided the assists for three tries. Blake Ferguson remains the sole doubt for the Bondi team, with the after effects of a rib injury incurred in last week’s win still a problem.
The last time the Roosters finished in the bottom four, they followed up the next year with a clean sweep. They have started this year with the intent to repeat history.
|Panthers to win @ $1.90||$501 Bonus Bet*|
Nth Queensland Cowboys v Manly Sea Eagles betting
|Nth Queensland Cowboys|
|Manly Sea Eagles|
Another titanic battle with old foes the Broncos went the way of the Cowboys last week, but it came at a cost.
A pack already weakened by the loss of Ben Hannant and James Tamou in the off-season are now faced with the repercussions of a potential ACL injury to prop Matt Scott.
With Antonio Winterstein suffering a suspected broken wrist and full-back Lachlan Coote a possible torn calf muscle plus the suspension of Jason Taumololo after a shoulder charge incident, the dramatic win could prove costly.
Victims of a mesmeric Eels side on Sunday, Manly will be hoping to record their opening victory of 2017 here. The biggest advantage they have is the catastrophic injury list that has befallen their opponents, one which may open the door to an unlikely Sea Eagles triumph. They have no reported injuries and will expect no changes to their line-up for this one.
|Sea Eagles to win @ $4.00||$501 Bonus Bet*|
Canberra Raiders v Wests Tigers betting
Although faced with a difficult opening to 2017, it is slightly surprising that the Raiders are yet to pick up a point.
Rumours abound that captain Jarrod Croker could make an early return here in what would be a timely boost for the Vikings. The Tigers are a team that the Raiders love playing against; last season’s results are testament to that, recording huge scores of 60-6 at GIO Stadium and 52-10 at Leichardt Oval.
After an excellent Round 1 win over the Rabbitohs, the Tigers were sent crashing back to earth by a resurgent Panthers at the weekend and this may not be the ideal time to be playing a motivated Canberra outfit.
It will be interesting to what effect Tim Simona’s deregistration will have on morale at the club with the disturbing details of the player’s behaviour coming to light this week. With the team missing finals footy by just a solitary point last year, it is appalling to think how much of a detrimental impact one player may have had on the fortunes of an entire club.
|Raiders to win @ $1.41||$501 Bonus Bet*|
Cronulla Sharks v St George Illawarra Dragons betting
|St George Illawarra Dragons|
A historic rivalry between these two generates plenty of hostility and sparks are sure to fly again here.
Valentine Holmes is set to return from a hamstring injury to give the Premiers a spur; allied to the wonderful victory over Canberra, things are starting to click for Shane Flanagan’s men.
The Dragons were given a brutal reality check after an opening day upset over the Panthers with the Eels dismantling Paul McGregor’s side in Wollongong.
With a poor recent away record – they have won just one of their last eight away from WIN Stadium, the Red V will be underdogs going into this.
|Sharks to win @ $1.37||$501 Bonus Bet*|
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