Can the two-time defending champion Sydney Roosters get their act together to get past the Canberra Raiders in their huge clash on Friday? Will the Parramatta Eels get the revenge they’re looking for when they take on a red-hot South Sydney Rabbitohs squad?
Okay NRL rugby betting buffs, with Week 2 of the 2020 NRL Telstra Premiership Finals on tap for this coming weekend and the grand finals not far away, it’s time to take a look at which teams are in action and which teams are offering the best value against their rugby betting odds.
Sydney Roosters (14-0-6) vs Canberra Raiders (14-0-6)
When: Friday, Oct. 9, 2020 at 3:50 AM
Where: Sydney Cricket Ground, Sydney
Josh Morris scored a pair of tries while superstar James Tedesco, Freddy Lussick and Angus Crichton all added solos tries the last time out, but the two-time defending champion Roosters came up just short in their Week 1 finals matchup against Penrith, losing 29-28 against the Panthers on Friday.
There’s some good news though as hooker Jake Friend (head knock) and interchange forward Sonny Bill Williams (neck) are both set to return to action. Freddy Lussick, who wore the No. 9 last week, has been left out of the squad altogether despite scoring the last time out while back-rower Nat Butcher has been pushed to the reserves. Prop Jared Waerea-Hargreaves avoided a suspension after his high tackle on Dylan Edwards while Daniel Suluka-Fifita and Matt Ikuvalu have been omitted from the reserves
The Raiders took out the Sharks 32-20 in their Week 1 finals clash on Saturday as Jack Wighton scored two tires and Joseph Tapine, George Williams and Elliott Whitehead all added solo tries in the win. Jarrod Croker went 4 of 6 on conversions. The Raiders came through the match against the Sharks fully intact and coach Ricky Stuart has named the same 17 players for this win-or-go-home affair.
While the Raiders will look to get revenge for their grand finals loss against the Roosters last season, I just don’t see it happening after watching these two championship hopefuls a week ago. While Sydney came up short against league-leading Penrith, they nearly beat the Panthers despite being on the road and now have the look of a team that is focused on the task at hand. Conversely, while Canberra beat Cronulla by a dozen points, the Raiders were dominated early on by a Sharks team that has been good in finishing eighth in the regular season, but certainly not great.
These longtime rivals met twice during the regular season. Once with Canberra winning 24-20 at the SCG in Round 10. Then Sydney extracted some revenge by recording a convincing 18-6 win at GIO Stadium in Round 17. The Roosters have dropped two straight coming into this matchup, but I love Sydney in this affair as I expect the defending champs to be fully focused.
NRL Week 2 Odds Pick: Roosters 24 Raiders 16
Check out the NRL Futures Odds to win the 2020 Telstra Premiership right here!
Parramatta Eels (15-0-5) vs South Sydney Rabbitohs (12-0-8)
When: Saturday, Oct. 10, 2020 at 3:50 AM
Where: Bankwest Stadium, Sydney
NRL Odds: OFF
Parramatta closed out the regular season by winning two straight and three of their final four games. But, the Eels were on the wrong end of a humbling 36-24 loss against Melbourne in their Week 1 finals qualifying matchup on Saturday. Nathan Brown, Clinton Gutherson, Blake Ferguson and Shaun Lane all scored tries while Mitchell Moses went 4-for-4 on conversions. Unfortunately, it wasn’t enough to get the win as the Eels were outscored 24-12 in the second half.
For this match, Blake Ferguson has been named on the wing. Meanwhile, George Jennings will start in place of the injured Maika Sivo (knee) on the other wing. Ray Stone is the new bench player replacing the suspended Marata Niukore. Niukore accepted a two-game ban for a crushing tackle. He will only play again this season if Parramatta reaches the grand final.
South Sydney won two of their final three regular season games. They come into this matchup fresh off a commanding 46-20 smackdown win over the Newcastle Knights in their finals Week 1 clash on Sunday. Tevita Tatola and Alex Johnston both scored two tries. Meanwhile Corey Allen, Cody Walker, Cameron Murray and Damien Cook all added lone tries in the win. Adam Reynolds went 6-for-8 on conversions and the Rabbitohs never looked back after going into the half up 20-14. Coach, Wayne Bennett will go with the same 17 that defeated Newcastle last week. Jaydn Su’A is listed to start and Liam Knight is on the bench. The pair may swap as they did against the Knights.
The Rabbitohs smacked the Eels around in their stunning 38-0 blowout win in Round 16 in August. But, I’m not expecting that to happen this time around. Parramatta won 15 games during the regular season to South Sydney’s 12 wins. Parramatta also has the far better defense in this affair, although the Rabbitohs are the better offensive team by far. The Souths are favored in this finals Week 2 clash, but I feel an upset brewing!