Keep an eye on Newcastle’s weather leading into the game as
there is rain around that may limit scoring to a degree.
The Sharks are dark horses at the moment and Newcastle were
belted by the Warriors last week, so it makes for an interesting clash of top
Chad Townsend’s return will help get the side around the
park, but without Shaun Johnson and Matt Moylan the attack takes a major hit.
Despite questionable form of late, I believe the Knights
have added greater resilience this season and am tipping them to bounce back
and win this game.
Big Klem is playing more minutes as the Knights try to build
momentum towards the finals. 60+ minutes may well be his regular game time on
the run home, making him a near must in Draftstars with his huge work ethic and
added offloading threat.
You can definitely criticise me for the constant selection
of KP, I’m clearly a fan boy so it’d be warranted. The way he’s been used by
the Knights for the majority of this year, particularly of late, has been hard
I think last week will be the huge wake up call Adam O’Brien
needed, and it’ll force him to reshape the way Ponga is injected. In short, give
him early ball in attacking territory. If you think otherwise than by all means
steer clear, it could prove a contest winning play if the tactics continue.
STARS TO AVOID
Barnett has been in great form recently, but he left the
field early last week with an injury concern before returning to finish the
game. He has a pretty crook history of injuries so with the recent scare I’m
happy to leave out.
I’m really liking Brailey this season and I think he’s
evolving with every game he plays. There is a concern Connor Tracey spells him
at some stage, but hopefully not for long if it does occur. With SJ out again
I’m backing Brailey to up his input in attack and utilise his threatening
I’m always on team Graham when Johnson is out. While already
vital, his role in attack takes on far greater importance in the star playmaker’s
absence. He’ll get through a decent amount of work and can hopefully add some
attacking stats to his score.
Graham and Cronulla’s left edge
For all the reasons listed above, including the return of Townsend on the left, I think that edge will see plenty of ball. I’m reluctant to state who will be playing centre and wing because John Morris flips it all the time, and Sione Katoa is out who has spent time there recently.
This is going to be an absolute cracker. South Sydney are
absolutely flying, while Melbourne are a side capable of shutting down the best
attacking units in the game.
I’m leaning towards the Storm to edge out their opposition
off the back of the forward pack.
If they win the middle, the Rabbitohs lethal attacking
contingent out wide will struggle to inject themselves into the game.
Smith returned last week after a short stint on the sideline
with injury. I’m tipping the Storm pack to win the battle of the forwards, which
will benefit Smith significantly.
Munster has forged a reputation for getting up for big games
across his career, while casually going about his business against lesser
opposition. This is a big game, and I expect him to lift in typical fashion.
STARS TO AVOID
Touted as one of the main beneficiaries of the new ruck
rules, Cook has struggled by his lofty standards to utilise his lethal running
game this season. The task won’t be made any easier against Melbourne who are
the benchmark of ruck control in the NRL. I prefer Smith for a slight increase
Tino has proven this season he’s a star in the making. With
Dale Finucane out he’s set to start at lock and should see increased game time.
He’s a gamebreaker and looks a terrific pick up at just over $11k. Keep an eye
on final team lists to ensure he remains a starter, but regardless he’s still a
Young Siro will have his work cut out against this ruthless
Melbourne pack. However, his development as an NRL standard player is growing
with every game and he looks a safe pick up to hopefully eclipse his value at
Fa’asuamaleaui and Ryan Papenhuyzen
Tino is a man mountain and will be busting tackles
everywhere and getting his arm free looking to offload. Little Papy will be lurking
like a bad smell and can latch onto a ball and finish off with his blinding