National Rugby League Round 24 Betting Preview

August 20th, 2010

Wow! Any rugby league fans that plan to miss the matches scheduled for Round 24 of the 2010 NRL Telstra Premiership are just plain crazy.

With just three weeks left until the September semis start, there is tension a plenty among the teams fighting for either a spot in the top eight or for those clubs desperate to secure a home game during the finals by rising into a spot in the top four.

With so much to play for and so many blockbusters scheduled for this weekend, we are sure there will be plenty of points, a number of upsets and lots of money to be made in the Ladbrokes.com.au markets for punters!

Highlights of the round include the Panthers v Rabbitohs Friday night footy showdown, the last chance battle between the Sea Eagles and Warriors at Brookie on Saturday, and the Eels v Tigers match on Sunday.

Below we have a quick look at all the games scheduled for Round 24, give our top footy tips and show where the value bets are at this week.

For more info on the eight matches, all the footy odds and team lists check out NRLleague.

Round 24 at a Glance:

First up on Friday night is a must see game between the Penrith Panthers and the South Sydney Rabbitohs at CUA Stadium where the Bunnies will be hoping to hop into the top eight with a win over a big cats side that has only won one of their past six. Souths have a poor record having never won at the venue, but with Champion back and everything to play for they could cause an upset.

The other Friday night game has the Newcastle Knights hosting the Brisbane Broncos at Energy Australia Stadium. Newcastle are all but out of the finals race making this one all about the boys from Brissie. Still without Lockyer it is desperate times for the baby Broncos as they seek their 19th straight finals appearance, but having won six straight away games should come out on top.

A cracker match on Saturday has the Manly Sea Eagles playing the New Zealand Warriors at Brookvale Oval. Manly are on a short turnaround after a big loss to the Dragons and could be a bit weary. Even though they are away from home we think the Warriors could annoy a few other clubs on way to the finals this year and with Vatuvei flying they may have more points in them.

Then up at Dairy Farmers Stadium the disappointing North Queensland Cowboys face off against the Canterbury Bulldogs. Even though both teams are out of finals contention, this should still prove a quality match. The home side are without Thurston and O’Donnell and will have to dig deep to enjoy a rare victory.

The third Saturday showdown is another game between two teams with seemingly nothing to play for when Melbourne Storm face the Cronulla Sharks at AAMI Park. Don’t be fooled into thinking this will be a boring game, however, as the Storm want to send their departing players out on a high. The Sharks upset the Roosters last week and have been far more competitive since Flanagan took over. We think it will be close but the Storm just look too classy.

Two big thrillers are then on the cards for Sunday with the Canberra Raiders hosting the top-of-the-table St George Illawarra Dragons at Canberra Stadium first up. The Dragons may have some post-match jitters going into this one as the Raiders can still make the finals if they win here and beat St George earlier in the season. In fact, the Green Machine have been beaten by the Red V just once since 2004.

The other top Sunday clash has the Parramatta Eels playing the Wests Tigers at Parramatta Stadium. Coming off a solid win over the Broncos and with a grandstand finish in their minds, the Eels are the favourites but the Tigers can win this. Wests thrashed the Panthers last week and are posting plenty of points. Get ready for some risky and entertaining ball movement in this one.

Finally on Monday night another beauty of a match will see the Sydney Roosters host the Gold Coast Titans at the SCG. Having suffered a bit of a slump over the last two weeks, the Chooks are out of the top four and determined to get back up there. The Titans can equal their record of five straight wins if they travel well and use their top two confidence. Still, the tri-colours with their Pearce and Carney combo back on track should prevail.

Rugby League Betting Round 24 Picks:

Match 1 – Rabbitohs* $2.65 Ladbrokes.com.au

Match 2 – Broncos $1.85 Ladbrokes.com.au

Match 3 – Warriors* $2.60 Ladbrokes.com.au

Match 4 – Cowboys* $2.35 Ladbrokes.com.au

Match 5 – Storm $1.28 Ladbrokes.com.au

Match 6 – Raiders* $2.25 Ladbrokes.com.au

Match 7 – Tigers* $2.15 Ladbrokes.com.au

Match 8 – Roosters $1.60 Ladbrokes.com.au

All odds are subject to change.

* Underdog Rugby League Picks of the Week: Never before this season have we backed so many underdogs in one week! But that’s what happens when the playoffs are just around the corner, the bookies underestimate the determination and desperation of the sides and punters can clean up! Five of our eight picks are for the underdogs, with the Rabbitohs to beat the Panthers and the Warriors to defeat the Sea Eagles the best value bets.

Agree or disagree with our picks? Let us know by leaving a comment below. We are always happy to hear from other Rugby League betting enthusiasts!

Exotic bets for this week worth a punt are:

– Rabbitohs to beat the Panthers by 1 – 6 points at $6.75 through Ladbrokes.com.au

– Willie Tonga to score first for the Cowboys on Sat at $6 through Ladbrokes.com.au

– Yes there will be a field goal in the Eels v Tigers clash on Sunday at $4.15 through Ladbrokes.com.au

2010 NRL Round 24 Match Calendar

Day

Date

Time (local)

Venue

Home Team

Away Team

Fri August 20 7:35pm CUA Stadium, Penrith Panthers Rabbitohs
Fri August 20 7:35pm Energy Australia Stadium Knights Broncos
Sat August 21 5:30pm Brookvale Oval Sea Eagles Warriors
Sat August 21 7:30pm Dairy Farmers Stadium Cowboys Bulldogs
Sat August 21 7:30pm AAMI Park Storm Sharks
Sun August 22 2:00pm Canberra Stadium Raiders Dragons
Sun August 22 3:00pm Parramatta Stadium Eels Tigers
Mon August 23 7:00pm Sydney Football Stadium Roosters Titans