Broncos Are Looking Good and Maybe the Warriors Will Win; Rugby League Columnist Tony Durkin Casts His Eye over Round 7 of the NRL

Gympie Times, The Qld., April 17, 2015 | Go to article overview

Broncos Are Looking Good and Maybe the Warriors Will Win; Rugby League Columnist Tony Durkin Casts His Eye over Round 7 of the NRL


TONIGHT

DRAGONS v BRONCOS

Jubilee Oval 7.35pm

History: Played 32; Broncos 19, Dragons 13

Last met: Broncos 30-22, round 25, 2014

THE Broncos will be in foreign territory tonight - they have played at Kogarah just once this century, in 2007. It is the spiritual home of the mighty Saints, and with four wins on the trot and an outstanding defensive record of just 64 points against in six outings, the Dragons will be hard to beat.

But the Broncos are also in rare form and lead the premiership table for the first time since 2011, so this shapes as a gripping encounter. The return of skipper Justin Hodges is huge for the Broncos, while losing forward Tyson Frizzell will hurt the Dragons.

TIP - Broncos

BULLDOGS v SEA EAGLES

ANZ Stadium 7.35pm

History: Played 121; Sea Eagles 63, Bulldogs 53, drawn 5

Last met: Bulldogs 18-17, semi-final, 2014

EVEN allowing for their missing names, both sides were horrendous last week and look mere shadows of the champion teams of recent years.

Centre Jamie Lyon will make a difference to the Sea Eagles, but it is their forwards that need to dig deep, particularly Willie Mason who has to step up.

The Bulldogs were leaderless and looked disinterested last weekend, and incumbent NSW halves Trent Hodkinson and Josh Reynolds will be the 'former Origin pairing' unless they start to produce some spark soon. Out of form and out of favour, the 'Dogs look totally out of sorts.

TIP - Sea Eagles

TOMORROW

TITANS v PANTHERS

Cbus Super Stadium 3.00pm

History: Played 12; Panthers 8, Titans 4

Last met: Panthers 40-nil, round 2, 2015

WHAT a ridiculous NRL draw - these sides played each other just five weeks ago and the Panthers won 40-nil. But that will not happen tomorrow and injuries - this time to ex-Titan Jamal Idris - the Panthers go in as underdogs. Without playmakers Wallace and Soward the Panthers have been pedestrian and the loss of Idris is huge. The Titans may be sitting just two rungs from the bottom, but they have been much better than that and their win over the Eels last week was outstanding. Their main concern is an 11 from 12 losing record at home.

TIP - Titans

COWBOYS v WARRIORS

1300Smiles Stadium 5.30pm

History: Played 33; Warriors 18, Cowboys 15

Last met: Warriors 20-16, round 3, 2014

DOES it get much better than this - Thurston v Johnson; Scott v Matulino; Taumalolo v Mannering; Moga v Hurrell? And while the Cowboys are the flavour of the month with three successive wins, the impressive Warriors actually sit above them on the ladder.

History tells us the Warriors, who have won just once in their past nine starts in Townsville, and have had 195 points scored against them in their past five visits, are no chance in this. But with a virtual Kiwi Test side they can never be underestimated. …

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