Almanac Rugby League – NRL 2022 Round 10: Go figure!

 

 

A degree of uncertainty seems to be insinuating its way into the competition and I’m all for it, even if it makes tipping a bit of a nightmare!

 

In Round 8 the Eels looked very ordinary against the Cowboys; in Round 9 they turned it around and toppled ladder leaders Penrith. Similarly, the Sharks had their worst game of the season against the Broncos last week, then they turned up on Sunday to beat the Warriors with only 12 men for most of the game (and even with 11 for a short period). A week ago the Rabbitohs looked good against the Sea Eagles; this week they looked very out of sorts against the Broncos. Last week the Bulldogs knocked over the Roosters; this week they resumed their usual habit of coming second. Go figure!

 

So what do we make of it all? I still think it’s a two horse race between the Panthers and Storm. If the Eels believe in themselves they just might cause problems; the Sharks are the wild card. The Cowboys are on a roll and have the Tigers this weekend so they should hold their top four spot for now. Rabbitohs tragic Mark Courtney tells me that he retains his belief that the Bunnies can still make an impact as the season progresses. So it may well be a Panthers/Storm duet at the moment, but at least there is enough uncertainty among the rest to make it interesting for your average punter.

 

Magic Round comes to Brisbane this weekend at the end of what looks like a very wet week up here. Let’s see how the Suncorp surface handles the traffic. Friday night kicks off with the Bulldogs v Knights game, a 50/50 call if ever there was one. I keep shaking my head about the Knights, waiting for them to come good; the Dogs aren’t going much better but at least they seem to be having a real go and that’s enough for me to go with them.

 

The Sea Eagles v Broncos clash is a big one for both sides. Neither has been totally convincing but both have shown good form at times. The Broncos looked good against the Bunnies and should be stronger this week if Haas and Capewell return. Manly will look to consolidate their form with Turbo getting back into the swing of things alongside DCE and Foran. I’ll let my heart rule my head and go with Brisbane.

 

Saturday’s triple header begins with the Warriors v Rabbitohs clash. Neither impressed in Round 9 with the Warriors looking a bit clueless against the Sharks. Fancy losing by 15+ playing against only 12 – Nathan Brown looked totally nonplussed, and rightly so. The Rabbitohs will be back on track by the end of this one.

 

How could you possibly pick the Titans to beat the Dragons? The Gold Coast lads are playing horrible footy while the Dragons have at least some form, even if it wasn’t on show against the thundering Storm. Enough said!

 

THE clash of the weekend sees the top-of-the-table clash between the Storm and Panthers. What a spectacle this one promises to be! The up front battle between the packs will decide this one and it will be no place for the feint hearted. But the loss of Paps and Smith will hurt the Storm, reducing their scoring potential considerably. On that basis, I’ll have to go with the Panthers.

 

Sunday’s first game is between the Sharks and the Raiders. How can you go past the Sharks after their gritty, even if not very pretty, win over the Warriors? Gutsy! I just cannot see the Raiders being competitive in this one – too patchy, a bit soft in defence, and lacking gel in their attack.

 

The Roosters v Eels match-up is the second best game of the weekend. The Roosters found a bit of form last week but it was only against the awful Titans; the Eels knocked off the Panthers. Form says the Eels and they probably deserve favouritism. King Gutho is in superb form. But a big game like this will bring out the best in the Chooks. Again, a big tussle between the packs will shape the result along with which set of forwards can best keep their cool. I’ll go with the Eels.

 

The round wraps up with the Tigers taking on the Cowboys in what should be a canter for the men from the north. They seems to have struck a rich vein of form while the Tigers have been miserable. I like the mobility, strength, creativity and endurance of the Cowboys’ forwards. If that momentum can be harnessed, then perhaps they will indeed be the surprise packet of the season.

 

So my winners this week are the Bulldogs, Broncos, Rabbitohs, Dragons, Penrith, Sharks, Eels and Cowboys.

 

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About Ian Hauser

A relaxed, Noosa-based retiree with a (very) modest sporting CV. A Queenslander through and through, especially when it comes to cricket and rugby league. I enjoy travel, good coffee and cake, reading, and have been known to appreciate a glass or three of wine. As well as being one of Footy Almanac's online editors, I moonlight as an editor for hire - check me out at www.writerightediting.com.au

Comments

  1. roger lowrey says

    With the greatest of respect Captain Hauser, go Bunnies!

    RDL

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