Draftstars preview: Saturday NRL fixtures

Check out our Draftstars preview of the three Saturday clashes, with the key players to target and avoid.

DraftStars preview

Draftstars is back for Round 8 of the NRL season and with it comes the chance to back your fantasy knowledge to win some cash.

For those unfamiliar with the concept, you can enter competitions for each game for as little as $2 and win major jackpots.

Let’s take a look into today’s fixtures.

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TITANS v SHARKS

OVERVIEW

I’ve been impressed with Cronulla in recent weeks as they’ve managed to stay relatively injury free which is a rare occurrence.

With key members of the spine getting some valuable time together their attack is clicking, and they look ominous. The Titans will put up a fight at home, but I’m expecting the Sharks to have too much firepower.

GUNS

Shaun Johnson

SJ is firing on all cylinders and importantly for his scoring output he is attacking on both sides of the ruck. This is particularly valuable as I think Cronulla will send plenty of attack at the Titans right edge of Ash Taylor (and potentially Bryce Cartwright pending Kevin Proctor’s replacement). If the Sharks pile on the points, SJ will too.

Blayke Brailey

Brailey isn’t a Draftstars gun, but his price tag of $13,100 suggests to a degree that he is. Normally I wouldn’t advocate for him, but he turned a corner last week.

He implemented his kicking game, began to run (his strength) and played the full 80 with no Connor Tracey on the bench.

Cronulla’s pack could crush through the Titans, and a confident Brailey could bust them apart through the ruck.

Furthermore, he’s the only big minute hooker on the field so he’s worth the investment.

STARS TO AVOID

Honestly there’s not many guns in this game so picking a squad isn’t difficult. The ‘guns’ such as Jai Arrow and Mo Fotuaika are fine selections at their price.

VALUE

Matt Moylan

Moylan is always a risk with his injury, but hopefully that keeps people away. He was very impressive against Manly as he gets his confidence and match fitness back following a host of hamstring injuries.

At just $7,900 I think he is a brilliant pick up at the price and is close to a must-have.

Wade Graham

He’s not exactly a bargain at $11,730, but I think Graham will see plenty of attacking ball as he opposes Ash Taylor. He’ll get ample opportunity to take apart that fragile edge and could score very well at a decent price.

Brian Kelly

I like Kelly as a Draftstars player due to his attacking upside. He won’t accrue massive tackle and runs stats, but he only needs a sniff of the line to rack up tries and assists.

COMBINATIONS

SJ and Sione Katoa

Do I need to explain myself? These two have formed a wonderful right edge combination off the back of SJ’s passing and kicking game. Expect it to continue on the Gold Coast.

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WARRIORS v BRONCOS

OVERVIEW

This is a very tough Draftstars match up as the result could be absolutely anything. They’re two completely underperforming sides who are unpredictable. It’ll be a complete lottery if you ask me, but here are the players I’ll be targeting and avoiding.

GUNS

Payne Haas

Haas has played just 59 and 63 minutes in recent weeks for below par scores by his standard.

Plain and simple, Anthony Seibold is under the pump, so I think he’ll play his main man for 70+ minutes in this clash.

Haas is due an attacking stat and is worth the $20k investment in an unpredictable game, particularly as the price will scare off many investors.

Tohu Harris

Harris can hold his head high during a tough period on and off the field for the Kiwis. He’s playing 80 minutes across the edge and middle and is getting through tremendous amounts of work.

He’s very capable of jagging attacking stats which is very possible against the Brisbane pack.

STARS TO AVOID

Jamayne Isaako

Isaako’s value of $9,990 suggests he isn’t a gun, but he is the second highest priced player at W/FB so I’ve included him.

He returns to the starting team, but it’s on the wing rather than fullback, so he’ll see far less ball.

He’s also not guaranteed to regain goal-kicking duties over Herbie Farnworth, although it is likely.

VALUE

Tom Flegler

Matt Lodge is expected to miss the clash with injury with Flegler likely the man to replace him at starting prop.

Flegler played big minutes early in the year when starting and was very busy in attack and defence.

He’s undervalued having played off the bench in recent weeks and looks like the best value in the contest at $8,410 provided he starts.

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TIGERS v PANTHERS

OVERVIEW

This promises to be a cracker clash to end Super Saturday. The Tigers are playing some great footy but I’m not convinced they’ve done so against quality opposition.

Penrith on the other hand have beaten the Roosters and Storm already this season. I’ll be favouring Penrith players marginally and do believe they’ll win this game.

GUNS

Nathan Cleary

Cleary has been superb this season as the primary playmaker in the Penrith halves. He gets a crack at BJ Leilua’s weak right edge which makes Cleary an extremely enticing investment.

STARS TO AVOID

Josh Aloiai

Aloiai has been terrific this season, but he looks overvalued in this particular contest at $14,350. He’s the highest priced front-rower and second highest second-rower, a position which has plenty of value.

Luke Brooks

Picking Brooks means you can’t have Cleary, and I’m very against that.

VALUE

Adam Doueihi

The former Rabbitoh is finding his feet at his new club since shifting to fullback. He’s tremendously calm for a youngster and is posing a serious threat with ball in hand. At $8,610 I believe he’s a terrific buy with plenty of upside.

Moses Mbye

Mbye is another utility who has found form since settling at centre. He’s under $8k, in a gun attacking side, and kicking goals, nice.

COMBINATIONS

Cleary and Kikau

Cleary isolates his opposing half and picks up a steaming Billy Kikau who runs over the top to score. Bam! I also like Cleary to Josh Mansour as a combination play.

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StatPoints value
Try8
Try-assist5
Field goal5
Linebreak4
Tackle break3
Goal2
Linebreak assist2
Offload2
Tackle 1
Run metre gained0.1
Kick metre gained0.05
Error-2
Missed tackle0.05

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