NewsNow

2021 NRL Round 10 Preview, Bulldogs Vs Raiders

Matt Attard previews the Magic Round clash between Canterbury-Bankstown and Canberra.

Embed from Getty Images

TEAM NEWS

Venue: Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane, Date: Saturday May 15, Time: 3pm

Bulldogs Team

1. Dallin Watene-Zelezniak
2. Nick Cotric
3. Will Hopoate
4. Nick Meaney
5. Tuipulotu Katoa
6. Brandon Wakeham
7. Jake Avarillo
8. Dylan Napa
9. Sione Katoa
10. Luke Thompson
11. Adam Elliott
12. Chris Smith
13. Renouf Atoni
14. Bradley Deitz
15. Corey Waddell
16. Ava Seumanufagai
17. Matt Doorey
19. Kyle Flanagan
20. Joe Stimson
21. Aaron Schoupp
23. Ofahiki Ogden

Team Changes

IN: Aaron Schoupp, Brandon Wakeham, Dylan Napa, Joe Stimson, Tuipulotu Katoa.

OUT: Corey Allan, Lachlan Lewis.

Raiders Team

1. Caleb Aekins
2. Bailey Simonsson
3. Sebastian Kris
4. Curtis Scott
5. Semi Valemei
6. Jack Wighton
7. George Williams
8. Josh Papalii
9. Tom Starling
10. Emre Guler
11. Corey Harawira-Naera
12. Elliott Whitehead
13. Hudson Young
14. Josh Hodgson
15. Dunamis Lui
16. Corey Horsburgh
17. Ryan James
18. Sam Williams
19. Matthew Timoko
20. Siliva Havilii
21. Harry Rushton

Team Changes

IN: Dunamis Lui, Harry Rushton, Josh Hodgson, Ryan James, Sam Williams, Semi Valemei.

OUT: Jordan Rapana, Joseph Tapine, Ryan Sutton.

Referee: Chris Butler

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

Bulldogs

Embed from Getty Images

Where to for the battling Bulldogs? More injuries, more pressure and more media scrutiny. Trent Barrett is tasked with getting the best out of what is essentially a reserve grade squad for the most part. That doesn’t excuse their lack of commitment in defence though.

Kyle Flanagan has been dropped while he also has a rib injury, meaning Jake Averillo, a centre or running five-eighth, will play halfback.

I can’t see things improving for the Dogs until they get some troops back. Josh Jackson, Jeremy Marshall-King, Dylan Napa and Corey Allen will all be back in the next two to four weeks.

Raiders

Embed from Getty Images

The Raiders have notoriously underperformed these past few weeks. The loss to the Panthers in round five really rattled them. They’ve had a sprinkling of injuries and haven’t been performing for the whole 80, which isn’t something we’re used to from the Green Machine.

Perhaps the new rules that have sped up the game are really taking its toll? But one thing is for sure, Ricky Stuart won’t have them playing this poorly for much longer.

PREVIEW

This is the perfect setting for the Raiders to play their way back into Stuart’s good books, as they face a Bulldogs team short 10 or so first grade players. It’s a team struggling to even manage the basics of rugby league.

Canberra will have an absolute field day at Suncorp Stadium, a ground where they are notoriously poor performers, which should cheer up Ricky and the media who have been so harsh on them.

KEY STAT

The head-to-head between these these two is tight: Canberra lead 19-18 since 1998. Their last two games have seen narrow wins to Canberra – 34-20 in 2020 (after the Dogs lead 20-12 at halftime), and 12-10 in 2019. Canberra’s 2019 win broke a three-game losing streak and kick-started their run to the grand final, winning eight of their next 12 to finish in the top four. Could history repeat itself?

However, there couldn’t be a worse place to play this game, as the Raiders and Bulldogs have won just 10 games between them at Suncorp Stadium since 2003, and only one win between them in 17 matches since 2012.

Raiders fans will have bad memories of their last trip to Suncorp Stadium: the preliminary final thrashing that ended their brave 2020 season.

PREDICTION

Surely this is the game where Canberra break their five-game losing streak? While the Raiders have turned back into the “Faiders” during second halves recently, they’ve played some good footy before their predictable collapses (including halftime leads of 24-6 against North Queensland and 16-0 against Newcastle), so they’ve got some points in them. That should be enough.

Raiders by 20.

Follow Nothing But League on Twitter and Facebook.

Other Articles

NRL Match Previews
NRL Match Previews

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Translate »