Canberra Raiders vs South Sydney Rabbitohs (Sat 3pm, GIO)
Last Five: Raiders 3 wins, Rabbitohs 2 wins
The Raiders have the chance to take out another top eight scalp when they host South Sydney Rabbitohs at GIO Stadium on Saturday. There was a massive sigh of relief from Ricky Stuart and the Raiders faithful after holding on against the Roosters even though they were outscored two tries to one. South Sydney slumped to two straight losses in Brisbane. The good news however is the return of GI, Alex Johnston and Campbell Graham. This backline now looks full of points. In the corresponding game this year the contest got heated. Sam Burgess was placed on report for a high tackle on Elliott Whitehead, and Jarrod Croker was sent to the sin-bin. Maybe this is the week Souths show the same type of effort that got them to the top after beating the Melbourne Storm.
PREDICTION: Rabbitohs 26 Raiders 18
Gold Coast Titans vs Melbourne Storm (Sat 5:30pm, CBUS)
Last Five: Storm 4 wins, Titans 1 win
This could be one of the best bets of the weekend, a win by the Gold Coast Titans against Melbourne Storm. With the expectation of wet weather football, Melbourne may not risk Cameron Smith considering he’s carrying a few niggling injuries. Already they are without Suliasi Vunivalu, the suspended Will Chamber and big bopper Nelson Asofa-Solomona. The Titans might have looked gone at half-time, but they showed a good response to Garth Brennan’s message in the sheds and looked a proper NRL side. One match-up to watch is AJ Brimson and Billy Slater. The apprentice and future star of the game against the most dominant fullback in the past decade.
PREDICTION: Titans 26 Storm 14
Sydney Roosters vs Brisbane Broncos (Sat 7:30pm, Allianz)
Last Five: Broncos 3 wins, Roosters 2 wins
Last week Brisbane responded to the off-field dramas surrounding Wayne Bennett by getting the better of a wounded South Sydney Rabbitohs at Suncorp. This week has been a more subdue build-up with focus on Matt Lodge and his 2018 rugby league story. Sydney Roosters couldn’t overcome the hoodoo against Canberra Raiders last Sunday and need to win, to be any chance of claiming the minor premiership against the Parramatta Eels in the last round. Luke Keary comes back into the side after injury and quite possibly Jared Waerea-Hargraves could start from the bench. Brisbane will be hoping Anthony Milford’s virus clears before Saturday night. Roosters might just be a little too good here.
PREDICTION: Roosters 24 Broncos 20