NRL Tipping: What the experts say - Round 10
Can the Dragons keep winning? Will the Wests Tigers end their losing streak? Which of Parramatta and Canterbury will win their bottom-of-the-ladder clash? Here are the tips from the NRL.com experts and Steve Turner's preview for each match.
Wests Tigers v Cowboys
The Cowboys showed signs of improvement last weekend with a spirited win over the Panthers after a poor start to the season. Meanwhile, the Tigers slumped to their third straight loss of the season and I can't see it getting any better this weekend. The Cowboys may only have three wins under their belt, but with too many big game players and experienced campaigners, they'll be too good for the Tigers.
Tip: Cowboys by 6
Knights v Panthers
Both sides come into this fixture off the back of losses. The Knights have been the surprise packet of 2018, while the Panthers have shown they are a genuine finals contender. Newcastle have young gun Kalyn Ponga, but they aren't getting enough out of their halves. The Panthers are down on backs, but their forward pack is very impressive and this is where it will be won on Friday night.
Tip: Panthers by 8
Bulldogs v Eels
The Bulldogs were a much-improved footy side against the Broncos with the changes to their side, despite not coming away with the two points. Meanwhile, the Eels will be disappointed with the way they started last week after fighting back and going down by two. Fix their start and eliminate errors and results will fall their way, but the Dogs love adversity and love a battle with their rivals. There's not many sides who thrive on adversity like Canterbury and I feel it's only a matter of time before the bounce of the ball falls their way.
Tip: Bulldogs by 4
Warriors v Roosters
After a hiccup against the Storm on Anzac Day, the Warriors got back into their groove and showed everyone that they are a very good football team with an impressive win over the Tigers. The Roosters, well I'm not sure what to make of their performances in recent weeks. They have mixed wins with losses for the past seven weeks and have really struggled to find consistency in their football. You don't write off a good team, but the Warriors have so much upside and on home soil they will be too good.
Tip: Warriors by 6
Storm v Titans
The Storm know what's required to be the best after a disappointing loss to the ladder-leading Dragons. The staff and the playing group will be quick to turn things around and get back to playing the Melbourne Storm style of football. The Titans are struggling. Key players are down on confidence, there are injuries and finding their next win seems so far away. I'm afraid it won't happen this week.
Tip: Storm by 12
Manly v Brisbane
It's been a month Manly would like to forget, but they showed plenty of spirit and fight against the Roosters despite going down by two. They are down on players, but the performances of Marty Taupau and Jake Trbojevic over the past fortnight have been nothing short of superb. The Broncos are looking for their third straight win, but they need more from recruit Jack Bird, who has seven runs from the past two games next to his name. The Broncos are a good side, but Manly are yet to register a win on the road this year and after what I saw last weekend, I see an upset brewing at Suncorp.
Tip: Manly by 4
Rabbitohs v Dragons
This game will be a beauty! The Dragons have simply been outstanding all year. Once again, they showed us all on the weekend against the reigning premiers that they're the real deal. A great forward pack. Brilliant halves. A crafty nine and quality outside backs. South Sydney have surprised me this year. They are a better team than I thought. Souths would have learned a lot from their previous encounter with the Red V in round five and with the return of Sam Burgess, an in-form Adam Reynolds and a number nine in Damien Cook who is knocking on the door of Origin, the Rabbitohs are a genuine finals contender in 2018. This will be a cracker of a battle, but you can't go past the best defensive and attacking team in the NRL.
Tip: Dragons by 4
Raiders v Sharks
The Raiders were good last weekend against the Titans. Aiden Sezer and Blake Austin are getting back to their best, while their forwards have been leading from the front with the likes of Josh Papalli and Shannon Boyd making their presence felt. The Sharks continue to show their resilience and their love for a grind after registering their third straight win last weekend. They may be down on players, but the performance of Andrew Fifita over the past three weeks has been outstanding. He has stood up and carried this Sharks side to victory. A road trip to Canberra is never fun, but I think the Sharks can make it win No.6 for the season in the Nation's capital.
Tip: Sharks by 4