Holden Cup Round 11 previews
The players to watch and predicted results for Round 11 of the National Youth Competition.
Sharks v Cowboys
The Sharks confirmed their status as the best-placed side to challenge the Panthers for the title with a crushing win over the Dragons last week highlighted by a barnstorming performance by Billy Magoulias who scored a try, ran for 202 metres and made 44 tackles in the 22-point win.
What's happened to the Cowboys? Their hot start to the year seems a distant memory following back-to-back losses to the Eels and Bulldogs. They conceded a try after 15 seconds last week and never recovered, eventually going down by six points against the men in blue and white. Star fullback Kalyn Ponga ran for 135 metres, broke 10 tackles and set up a try in the loss.
Tip: Sharks by 10
Warriors v Dragons
A double to back-rower Joseph Vuna wasn't enough as the Warriors fell to their 10th loss in a row to start the season. Their job doesn't get any easier with a showdown against the Dragons who piled on 48 points when the sides met in Round 4.
The Red V are coming off a poor performance against their local rivals, with Wayne Collins's men outclassed by Cronulla in front of their home fans. They should bounce back in a big way on Friday.
Tip: Dragons by 16
Broncos v Wests Tigers
A tough fortnight has seen the Broncos slide out of the top eight after conceding 90 points in back-to-back losses to Penrith and Manly.
The Wests Tigers became the first team to be held to nil this season with a disappointing loss to the 15th-placed Rabbitohs.
Tip: Broncos by 14
Rabbitohs v Storm
Footy returns to Redfern Oval with the Bunnies aiming for back-to-back wins for the first time this season against a Storm side that has dropped its last two. The Rabbitohs had four players run for over 200 metres against the Tigers and will be full of confidence after a stirring defensive display.
Conversely, Melbourne only had four players who cracked triple digits in last week's high-scoring loss to the Titans. Scoring points hasn't been an issue for the Storm this year, but they'll need to address their defensive issues having allowed 90 points in the past fortnight.
Tip: Storm by 8
Titans v Sea Eagles
Based on last week's results, this shapes as the match of the round. The Sea Eagles were simply superb against Brisbane, with Brad Parker scoring three tries and kicking five goals, while Tom Wright had three try assists in the rout.
The Titans were equally impressive in their 44-32 win over the Storm, with fullback Tyronne Roberts-Davis reminding NRL selectors of his class with two tries, two assists and 227 metres.
Tip: Titans by 6
Eels v Raiders
Parramatta left it late to down the Roosters, with skipper Denzal Tonise diving over to level things up before Troy Dargan slotted the match-winning conversion. Greg Leleisiuao continued his absurd start to the year with two tries and 265 metres.
The Raiders were in the contest for the first 40 minutes against Newcastle but were blown away after the break at McDonald Jones Stadium.
Tip: Eels by 20
Knights v Panthers
Newcastle will take plenty of confidence into this one given they defeated the Panthers in the corresponding fixture last season. The Knights have won two on the trot and look slick every time they get near the line.
Penrith extended their unbeaten run to nine matches following a comfortable win over the Warriors that saw Wayde Egan become the first hooker in NYC history to score four tries in a match.
Tip: Panthers by 12
Bulldogs v Roosters
The Roosters might have eased past the Bulldogs in Round 2, but the defending premiers find themselves below Canterbury on the ladder heading into Sunday's rematch.
The Bulldogs upset the Cowboys last week and will be keen for something similar against a Roosters side that let an eight-point lead slip against the Eels.
Tip: Roosters by 4
Last week's tipping results: 5/8
Season results: 52/80