There were some interesting results in Round 4 of the NRL last week but two things remain the same, the Dragons and Warriors are both unbeaten.
Round 5 action starts on Thursday with the hapless Raiders taking on the Bulldogs, with both teams desperately needing a win.
7:50pm Canberra Raiders vs. Canterbury Bulldogs @ GIO Stadium
Can it get much worse for the Canberra Raiders? We don’t think so, but a loss against the Bulldogs could seal their fate in 2018.
After suffering a shocking loss to the Warriors two weeks ago, the Raiders had a chance to redeem themselves against the Sea Eagles but they showed little fight.
The Bulldogs looked likely winners over the Rabbitohs but two late tries gave the Bulldogs another loss on the season.
Which one of these bad sides will take the win on Thursday? It’s all about attitude and expect Raiders coach Ricky Stuart to start laying down the hammer.
Betting tip: Raiders to win @ $1.75 (BET NOW)
Raiders by 4
6:00pm Cronulla Sharks vs. Sydney Roosters @ Southern Cross Stadium
The Sharks bounced back to life with a gutsy win over the Melbourne Storm and although the game had some interest officiating, the Sharks deserved the win.
The 2016 premiers needed the morale-boosting win after a poor start to the season and taking on the Roosters at this stage of the season is a positive.
Roosters’ fans should have been shocked with their effort against the Warriors and considering they were the premiership front runners before the season started, it’s hardly encouraging signs.
The Roosters are a team which can either be hot or cold on any given day and we can’t trust them at this stage, so we’re sticking with the form side.
Betting tip: Sharks to win @ $2.20 (BET NOW)
Sharks by 2
7:50pm St George Dragons vs. South Sydney Rabbitohs @ Jubilee Oval
Not many predicted the Dragons to be unbeaten after four games and they will be looking to make that five against the Rabbitohs.
Sitting in first position on the ladder, the Dragons have looked professional to date and although they haven’t faced some of the top teams, there are positives to be taken from their start.
The Rabbitohs scored a last-ditch win against the Bulldogs last week and their confidence will be up.
These two sides although engage in a good battle but we have to give the edge to the Dragons, which look likely to continue winning this season.
Betting tip: Dragons 1-12 @ $3.10 (BET NOW)
Dragons by 8
3:00pm Wests Tigers vs. Melbourne Storm @ Mt Smart Stadium
Auckland hosts this all-Australian clash between two of the best sides in the NRL this season.
The Tigers have won three from four games which is much better than expected, whereas the Storm have relatively underperformed to date.
Looking to bounce back after being soundly defeated by the Sharks last week, the Storm will look to assert their class against the Tigers at Mt Smart Stadium.
The neutral venue will help the Storm and although losing Cooper Cronk has had a negative impact on the Storm, they should be too good for the Tigers.
Betting tip: Storm –6.5 @ $1.90 (BET NOW)
Storm by 10
5:30pm New Zealand Warriors vs. North Queensland Cowboys @ Mt Smart Stadium
Expectations to begin the season were for the Warriors to be in 13th position after Round 4 and the Cowboys to be second, but not the other way around.
Unbeaten after four rounds and coming off a stunning win over the Roosters, the Warriors are in full flight and they don’t appear to be losing altitude.
It couldn’t be any more different for the Cowboys, which have been struggling all season and JT has been largely kept in check.
Putting trust in the Warriors is always risky business, but they’re currently underdogs to win at Mt Smart Stadium and that doesn’t make sense.
All things being equal, the Warriors should take this.
Betting tip: Warriors to win @ $1.95 (BET NOW)
Warriors by 12
7:35pm Newcastle Knights vs. Brisbane Broncos @ McDonald Jones Stadium
The season started so well for the Knights when beating the Sea Eagles, but they’re coming back down to earth.
It was only a matter of time before the Knights started to struggle and coming up against a hurting Broncos side won’t help their cause.
The Broncos have been poor in recent weeks but expect the expertly-coached side to come out firing this week and put the Knights to the sword.
Punters are getting great odds for the visiting side.
Betting tip: Broncos to win @ 1.90 (BET NOW)
Broncos by 14
2:00pm Gold Coast Titans vs. Manly Sea Eagles @ Marley Brown Oval
We’re not sure what to make of the Titans this season. One week they look horrible and the next they beat the Broncos.
That being said, this game should be about the Sea Eagles and their resurgence back up the NRL ladder after scoring an easy win over the Raiders last week.
Their rangy back line tore through the Raider defence at will and the Titans don’t have much going in that area either.
We credit the Titans for showing up last week and having Ash Taylor back in the squad is a positive, but if Manly play anything like they did last week, it’ll be an easy victory for them.
Betting tip: Sea Eagles to win @ $1.67 (BET NOW)
Sea Eagles by 14
4:10pm Parramatta Eels vs. Penrith Panthers @ ANZ Stadium
That was some effort by James Maloney and the Panthers last week to defeat the Cowboys 33-14 in Queensland.
Most punters expected the Panthers to struggle without Nathan Cleary, but quality halve James Maloney took charge and played one of his career-best games.
They will look to cement their position in the top three with a win against the Eels, which continue to sit on the bottom of the ladder.
It’s tough to know if the Eels are going to make a charge any time soon because their players are capable, but at this stage we’ll stick with the better side.
Betting tip: Panthers to win @ $1.60 (BET NOW)
Panthers by 4