A long and disrupted round of NRL action still produced the goods as the Sea Eagles, in particular, kept themselves in the hunt for finals football.
Up & Down Broncos
The Brisbane Broncos are riding high on the back of an eight-game winning streak but it’s not all smiles after their 24-18 win over the Canberra Raiders in Round 14.
Adam Reynolds and Payne Haas are under injury clouds but expected to play in Round 15. Cory Paix has been a key feature throughout the winning streak but will miss the next 4-6 weeks with a MCL sprain. Meanwhile, Kotoni Staggs, Corey Oates and Te Maire Martin are nursing bumps and bruises but are otherwise cleared of serious injury.
Herbie Farnworth, on the other hand, will miss the next 3-4 months following a biceps injury. Undergoing surgery, he is a big loss for the Broncos in a position that has played a big part in their improving defence.
Statement Game of Round 14
Statements are made every round in the NRL. In Round 13 it was the North Queensland Cowboys. This week it’s the Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles.
Two weeks in a row the Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles have entered a game as relatively slight -4.5 or -3.5 favourites before going on to thrash their opposition. While it was the New Zealand Warriors in Round 13 and Wests Tigers in Round 14 – two wooden spoon contending teams – a depleted Sea Eagles managed to get the job done with relative ease.
They relied heavily on Tom Trbojevic last year. He played one of the best individual seasons in NRL history and they became a Trbojevic-or-nothing sort of team. However, with the fullback again sidelined and Daly Cherry-Evans also missing the last two games, the Sea Eagles have found ways to cope.
Grossly underrated the last two weeks, is it time to consider their place in the Top 8? Currently 9th on the NRL ladder, their $2.10 to play finals football appeals.
The Unwanted Culinary Tool
We have quite the race on our hands for the wooden spoon in 2022.
The Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs have shaken up the wooden spoon race following their big win over the Parramatta Eels in Round 14. They’ve lifted themselves off the bottom of the NRL ladder with the Gold Coast Titans now fixed to 16th. The Bulldogs navigated a difficult start to the year and their draw is starting to level out as they improve. The Titans, on the other hand, get worse every week.
Brett Kimmorley’s Wests Tigers and Stacey Jones’ New Zealand Warriors are also in the hunt. Both carry an element of the unknown. However, a couple of early wins for the Warriors and a return to New Zealand for four games should get them over the line.
Wooden Spoon Watch
A couple of big games in the race to avoid the spoon in the next two weeks.
Round 15: Bulldogs v Tigers
Round 16: Knights v Titans, Warriors v Tigers
— Jason Oliver (@JasonNRL) June 12, 2022
NRL Premiership Odds Update
While the Penrith Panthers are considerable favourites and again looked dominant in Round 14, it’s still worth checking in on the odds to win the 2022 NRL premiership. Crazier things have happened in rugby league and we can never rule out an upset in September.
NRL PREMIERSHIP ODDS
|North Queensland Cowboys||$11|
|South Sydney Rabbitohs||$34|
|Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles||$46|
|St. George-Illawarra Dragons||$226|
|Gold Coast Titans||$501|
|New Zealand Warriors||$501|