Tuesday 5 May 2009

NRL Tips Round 9 2009

This is an archived story - so check the main page - www.wdnicolson.blogspot.com for the current round of tipping for NRL, AFL and Super 14. The site is also updated with opinion, news and features regularly. The Tipping downturn continued last weekend... 3/8 in the NRL (no thanks to Benji Marshall pulling out post-tips) but batted above .500 in the AFL and Super 14 (5/8 and 5/7 respectively). That being said there's only 4 games on the NRL schedule this weekend thanks to the ANZAC Test Match and City v Country on Friday Night. NRL Tips today and the AFL/Super 14 tips later on in the week when we've got an idea of the teams. NRL ROUND 09 - 2009 City Origin over Country Origin > I am totally against Peter Wallace as NSW halfback so I want Jarrod Mullen to combine really well with Terry Campese at the scrumbase for Country, but I also want Robbie Farah to win the hooking spot ahead of Country rake Michael Ennis. Truth be told I should be tipping a high scoring draw. The selectors have me scratching my head and in Country's case - resigning over their coach's demands at the selection table (Laurie Daley - you were a great player but your infactuation with Brett White is unhealthy and I seriously doubt your ability to judge talent outside of 'can't miss prospects' - wake up and realise you need guys like Hindmarsh in the Country side as well as NSW to win - pretenders who have nice stats don't mean didly in Origin so hopefully when City Origin take charge behind Robbie Farah - the other NSW selectors will overrule you where it counts). Now that hurts to write but Daley apparently wanted Trent Barrett at halfback ahead of Mullen and the other halfback in good form - Brett Kimmorley wasn't even considered on the basis he wasn't in the selection frame for NSW... you can't tell me White, Simpson, Hornby, McManus and Ryan seriously are???? About your only saving grace is giving Campese and Jamie Soward a chance - but with Mullen in the mix I'm worried that's too many cooks unless Campo does some duty at lock. Anyhoo - City to win 26-16. Australia over New Zealand > Will try and get a serious preview out tomorrow - but at the moment you'd be reaching to suggest Australia won't be determined to win this game after being outplayed in the World Cup Final last year - and having Steven Price back in the lineup cannot be underestimated. Full preview Wednesday or Thursday. Australia by 10. Dragons over Cowboys. > This is a very very tough game to pick before the rep games on Friday Night as both sides could be without some vital players given the short backup timeframe. If Thurston can't put his shoulder through a second 80 minutes in 24 hours then the Dragons would normally be raging hot favourites but they could find themselves without any one of Soward, Weyman, Creagh, Hornby (ruled out of Country Origin but named for Dragons... amazingly...), Boyd and Poore who must all attempt the backup to play. If the majority of the Dragons can play in Townsville - what I saw of the Cowboys last Friday Night against the Eels makes them still raging hot favourites. Dragons by 8+ on the back of Soward again. Titans over Knights > Not entirely sure what is possessing me to take the away team again here but Jarrod Mullen would have to be in serious doubt playing a second game on his dodgy shoulder in the space of 3 days and he's the key to the Knights attack clicking. Gidley will have no trouble backing up from his bench role in the Test Match and McManus is a winger so he'll be fine. For the Titans they will have Bailey and Laffranchi backing up from Test duty and Minichiello for Country Origin - but Nathan Friend, Preston Campbell and most importantly Scott Prince are rep footy free and can match the Knights free-wheeling style for a vital away win. Knights shocked everyone by crushing the Broncos but the Titans don't have their key playmakers involved in rep footy - so Titans away. Broncos over Sea Eagles > Again backing up becomes a factor but the Broncos probably had their loss to the Knights coming after winning a number of games in a row without really hitting their stride - while the Sea Eagles are horrible in attack without Brett Stewart and have a significant rep commitment going into this one. About the only way you'd give Manly a chance is if Lockyer, Hodges, Folau and Wallace all can't backup from their respective games and even then - could you pick Manly? I certainly can't so Broncos to win. Storm over Roosters > The key player who may not backup is Billy Slater - who is under an injury cloud going into the Test Match after rolling his ankle at Australian training. He should play the Test but the Monday Night Game is a lottery as it might blow up after Friday. If he's out the Storm's attacking heartbeat slows but it should still be good enough to account for a Roosters team that was lucky it was playing the Sharks last Saturday. Both sides are terrible and the Storm played some good footy in their win at Brookvale over Manly. The Roosters aren't no hope but they need a mass casualty ward from the rep games to deplete the Storm to be real contenders here. AFL ROUND 07 - 2009 The BIG news is Gary Ablett Junior is out for 2-3 weeks with a groin strain and Matthew Richardson has a serious hamstring tear and is out for 3 months... as for the tips - later in the week I'll do my best to give you some idea of what I'm leaning towards in Round 7 of the AFL for 2009. Hawks over Bombers Cats over Swans Tigers over Lions Blues over Dockers Kangaroos over Power Bulldogs over Crows Eagles over Demons Magpies over Saints SUPER 14 Week 13 - 2009 Got burnt by the Stormers yet again! But good luck to the Chiefs who are not the same team I saw in Round 2 by any stretch. The Waratahs are still in contention but will ultimately rue their inability to put big scores on this season as their bonus point situation is pathetic compared to teams already in the Top 4. Crusaders over Reds Hurricanes over Chiefs Blues over Brumbies Sharks over Waratahs Force over Stormers Lions over Highlanders Bulls over Cheetahs Good luck with your tips this weekend!