Date: Monday 11th May
Venue: ANZ Stadium
Kick-Off: 7:00pm AEDT
Rabbitohs: 1. Greg Inglis ©, 2. Alex Johnston, 3. Dylan Walker, 4. Bryson Goodwin, 5. Joel Reddy, 6. John Sutton, 7. Luke Keary, 8. George Burgess, 9. Issac Luke, 10. Dave Tyrell, 11. Chris Grevsmuhl, 11. Chris McQueen, 13. Thomas Burgess, 14. Cameron McInnes, 15. Ben Lowe, 16. Nathan Brown, 17. Tim Grant, 18. Aaron Gray.
Coach – Michael Maguire
Dragons: 1. Peter Mata’utia, 2. Etonia Nabuli, 3. Euan Aitken, 4. Dyan Farrell, 5. Jason Nightingale, 6. Gareth Widdop, 7. Benji Marshall, 8. Leeson Ah Mau, 9. Mitch Rein, 10. Mike Cooper, 11. Tyson Frizell, 12. Joel Thompson, 13. Trent Merrin, 14. Jake Marketo, 15. Ben Creagh, 16. Jack de Belin, 17. Heath L’Estrange, 20. George Rose, 24. Will Matthews.
Coach – Paul McGregor
The Dragons have been one of the competitions surprise packages so far, winning six on the trot to reside second on the competition ladder, only points differential separating them from the first placed Broncos.
The Rabbitohs have been a surprise package as well, but not in a way that is bringing much enjoyment to Bunnies fans. The defending champions rampaged through their preseason campaign, adding the NRL Nines and World Club Challenge to their list of accolades, bringing huge expectation into the 2015 season that they’ve been so far unable to deliver on with a record of just four wins four losses.
The Bunnies struggles however are easy to identify, the loss of halfback Adam Reynolds the clear instigator in their downward spiral. Without Reynolds, compounded by further injuries throughout the side, Souths have become directionless, and despite the efforts of gun young half Luke Keary, it’s obvious that Souths need Reynolds back and quickly. There’s murmurs that he may make his return this week, but he hasn’t been named and said murmurs are yet to be confirmed.
A competition best defence that has conceded just 86 points has been the instigator for an unlikely Dragons crusade. Their attack has been dismal however, 112 points for the second lowest of all sides. On average the Dragons average just 14 points per game, but they concede an even slimmer total of just 10.75 on average. As a result, the Dragons have become a dream side for bettors, with total points under best becoming a regular occurrence in Saints games. This week’s total currently sits at 38.5 with most agencies, despite their games coming in at totals of 12, 26, 42, 16, 13, 37, 22 and 26. Only once has this week’s total of 38.5 been eclipsed, only twice have Dragons games even broken 30 points this year, so plenty of value for punters on offer. The total becomes even more likely with the loss of Josh Dugan, the Dragons most potent attacking threat succumbing to a knee injury while on Australian duty sadly robbing us of an Origin calibre battle against Souths fullback Greg Inglis.
Prediction: Dragons to cover the +4.5 point spread.