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Matthew Bowen

Josh Hoffman

North Queensland Cowboys Cowboys
Brisbane Broncos Broncos
2012 Stats
Appearances:
26
Tries:
13
Points:
78
Tackles:
99
Linebreaks:
20

Age: 32

Height: 175cm

Weight: 85kg

Matthew Bowen
2012 Stats
Appearances:
23
Tries:
3
Points:
12
Tackles:
40
Linebreaks:
5

Age: 26

Height: 183cm

Weight: 93kg

Josh Hoffman
vs

An in-form Matty Bowen in front of a rowdy home crowd in Townsville is a daunting challenge for most teams, especially when finals survival is on the line. Can the Broncos bump Bowen into the off-season?

He is back at fullback and the Broncos are back in the winners list, but will the Brisbane boys be able to forget their string of six losses and make it back-to-back wins? Can Hoffman stand up to the pressure?

Michael Ennis

Matt Ballin

Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs Bulldogs
Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles Sea Eagles
2012 Stats
Tackles:
993
Missed Tackles:
88
L/B Assists:
4
Offloads:
5
Breaks Tackle:
28

Age: 30

Height: 179cm

Weight: 90kg

Michael Ennis
2012 Stats
Tackles:
1129
Missed Tackles:
73
L/B Assists:
1
Offloads:
6
Breaks Tackle:
15

Age: 30

Height: 179cm

Weight: 88kg

Matt Ballin
vs

Under the reign of coach Dessie, the menace formally known as Ennis has helped lead the Bulldogs to the Minor Premiership. But everyone knows all their hard work will be forgotten if the can’t claim Grand Final victory.

He might not be the Sea Eagles’ superstar but the work Ballin produces up the middle is a big part of their winning formula. Can Ballin put the bite on the Bulldogs and out-menace Michael Ennis in this clash of the NRL heavyweights?

 

Melbourne Storm

Storm

South Sydney Rabbitohs

Rabbitohs

Coach: Craig Bellamy
Coach: Michael Maguire
2012 Club Stats
Tries:
119
Goals:
90
Points:
657
Tackles:
8497
Missed Tackles:
746
Linebreaks:
134
2012 Club Stats
Tries:
102
Goals:
100
Points:
611
Tackles:
8491
Missed Tackles:
748
Linebreaks:
137
vs

Midway through the season the Storm were red-hot favourites to take the title, with no team able to get close until the Sharks stopped them in round 10. Can the Bunnies find that same formula and strike down the Storm?

The ‘Pride of the League’ are the sentimental favourites for everyone except Storm fans this week. Bellamy and his big three will be looking to stomp on the Bunnies and send them to a must-win match in the second week of the finals.

  • Storm
    50%
  • Rabbitohs
    50%

Canberra Raiders

Raiders

Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks

Sharks

Coach: David Furner
Coach: Shane Flanagan
2012 Club Stats
Try Assists:
82
Offloads:
287
Errors:
249
Tries:
107
Tackles:
7850
Linebreaks:
119
2012 Club Stats
Try Assists:
60
Offloads:
290
Errors:
268
Tries:
79
Tackles:
7530
Linebreaks:
100
vs

It looked like the Sharks were going to be the fairytale story of 2012 but then the Raiders jumped into the top eight and now look set to shake things up. Will the Raiders run the Sharks out of the finals race?

When it comes to strike weapons the Sharks are pretty well equipped with captain Gallen and kid Carney on their list. Can the Sharks find their early season form and sink the green machine on their home turf?

 

Big Ben

Mighty Matt

vs
Tuesday 4th September
Tuesday 4th September

There is no more Lockyer and soon to be no more Petero so can big Ben step into their shoes and show the Broncos fans that he is strong enough to carry the team to victory over their little Cowboys brothers?

Matt is the engine room of the Cowboys and with Bowen and Thurston setting up the tries left, right and centre things are working nicely for this well-oiled machine. Is there enough petrol left in the tank to outrun the Broncos?

Mid-season miracle

Sea Eagles strike weapon

vs
Tuesday 4th September
Tuesday 4th September

It has been a season to remember for this lucky charm who has not had to taste defeat very often while in blue and white. Can Krisnan keep the luck coming and send the Sea Eagles into sudden death?

When you play as physically as Matai you are bound to get a few injuries. The strong Sea Eagles centre has been in great form this season and will be looking to keep his team flying through to back-to-back premierships.

 
 
 
 
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The views in this article are the author’s and not necessarily those of the clubs or the NRL.