NRL Round 6 tips and predictionsPosted on 10/04 by Joe Gann
Another win over Melbourne Storm has resulted in the Wests Tigers moving into the top four
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Roosters v Rabbitohs
Higher concentration levels were the key to the Roosters' emphatic win over the Sharks in Round 5, with the Chooks forward pack nullifying their opponents. Cooper Cronk and Luke Keary took full advantage of the field position afforded them to ensure the Tricolours bounced back from the previous weekend’s loss to the Warriors. A desperate late fightback against the Dragons wasn’t quite enough to take the spoils last week, but Rabbitohs coach Anthony Seibold can take comfort from the fighting spirit displayed by his players. They will need to make a better start against the Roosters this week, they cannot afford to allow the top sides in the competition a head start, and it is an aspect of the game that they will surely be aware of in preparation for this one.
Prediction - Roosters
Storm v Knights
A nightmare start for the Premiers, which now includes back-to-back defeats at the hands of the Tigers, has seen them drop to 2-3 for the season. Uncharacteristic sloppiness was a feature of their play yet again, as they fell to back-to-back away defeats for the first time since 2015. The Knights will fancy themselves here after claiming a sweet victory over a Broncos side led by former coach Wayne Bennett; a match that was overshadowed by a public spat involving both the coaches from both clubs.
Prediction - Storm
Dragons v Sharks
A dominant first half, in which they enjoyed 71% possession paved the way for the Dragons to claim a record-breaking fifth consecutive win before the five-day turnaround took its toll and they found themselves forced to withstand a late Rabbitohs onslaught. Coach Paul McGregor will be delighted that his side showed the mettle to complete the job over the full 80 minutes, an aspect of their 2017 campaign that hindered their progress. Comprehensively beaten by a rampant Roosters outfit at home last week, the Sharks don’t come into the game against the competition leaders in great shape. James Segeyaro will be monitored for a head knock he received last weekend, and Josh Dugan may return from a groin injury that forced his late withdrawal on Friday night.
Prediction - Dragons
Warriors v Broncos
A solid defence, a free-flowing attack and an improved mentality from a group of players that were written off before the season kicked off has been central to the Warriors’ stunning start to 2018. 5-0 going into this week, it’s difficult to back against them making it six from six. The season goes from bad to worse for the Broncos following their 15-10 defeat at the hands of the Knights. Losing to the Titans, losing assistant coach Kevin Walters and now losing to the Knights rounds off a horror week for coach Wayne Bennett. Their prospects don’t appear likely to improve any time soon as they take on the high-flying Warriors in Auckland in round 6.
Prediction - Warriors
Cowboys v Bulldogs
Last year’s grand finalists have made a dreadful start to the new campaign and currently languish in fourteenth place on the back of four straight defeats. The Bulldogs were defeated by the hitherto pointless Raiders last week in a game that saw plenty of casualties. Brett Morris left the field with a concussion and was unable to return and is a doubt for this weekend’s trip to Townsville as the Bulldogs look to add to their solitary win this year.
Prediction - Cowboys
Raiders v Eels
The Raiders have finally delivered the kind of gutsy performance that coach Ricky Stuart had demanded of his players following a winless start to the season. The fighting spirit was plain to see as the Green Machine ran out deserved 26-10 winners against the Bulldogs in a game that saw a catalogue of injuries reduce their numbers to the extent that just Liam Wright remained on the bench for the second half. They will be hoping that this gritty win will provide a launching pad for their season. The Eels’ winless streak enters its sixth week now, and they are the only team in the competition that remains pointless following the Raiders’ win over the Bulldogs last week. Some rare good news comes in the form of the likely return to the squad of Clint Gutherson and Bevan French, as their need for a win becomes more desperate.
Prediction - Eels
Panthers v Titans
A second win over neighbours the Eels came at a cost for the Panthers last week with Waka Blake set for a spell on the sidelines after sustaining a high-grade syndesmosis injury. Riding high in third position with 4 wins from 5, it has been a superb start for the mountain men. The Titans' excellent victory over the Sea Eagles last week completed a magnificent fortnight for the club following their round 4 win over the Broncos - they sit in sixth, ahead of both of their Queensland rivals.
Prediction - Panthers
Sea Eagles v Tigers
A second-half fightback wasn’t enough to overcome the Titans last week as the Sea Eagles fell to their third defeat of the campaign. They face a Wests side who have grabbed the headlines this season following their exploits so far. The Tigers have proved that their excellent opening to the campaign is no fluke with a second victory over the Storm in a matter of weeks. The outstanding contribution of Luke Brooks was at the heart of a magnificent win that has propelled the Tigers into the top four.
Prediction - Tigers
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