panthers vs sharks; nrl round 15, nrl round 25

As well as providing his best value bets every week, our NRL guru Steve Green also previews every NRL game for members. Each week on the blog we’ll feature some of his match previews from the eight games. Check out his NRL Round 25 Friday Double Preview below

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NRL Round 25: Sharks v Storm

With the Raiders losing, some pressure has been lifted off the Sharks, who now need to ensure that if they do lose, they do not lose by much.

While Bellamy has named Hynes and Hughes in the halves, I think there is a very good chance one of these guys gets rested with Cooper Johns moved yesterday from the extended bench into the 17 man squad, at the expense of Ryley Jacks. Considering how important he is and noting he has played a lot of footy this year, I would think Hughes is still a chance of being replaced, or at the very least, given an early mark.

While a loss here would mean the Storm would very likely lose the minor premiership, I think coming second and getting Souths in the first week of the finals is the much easier way to a Grand Final.

Whoever comes first will likely play the rampaging Manly team. And with the Panthers naming a full strength team, Coach Bellamy could use this as a game to give guys like Big Nelson and Finucane some game time, while giving his key players a week off.

Coach Bellamy has already showed his hand by resting Cameron Munster, Christian Welch, Felise Kaufusi, Jesse Bromwich, Josh Addo-Carr, Kenny Bromwich, Reimis Smith and Tom Eisenhuth.

With Daniel Atkinson and Trent Loiero on the extended bench, and Jordan Grant, Tepai Moeroa and Cooper Johns on the bench, there is still plenty of scope for Bellamy to rest J Hughes, B Smith and N Hynes, who have all played over 20 games this year.

Even they do play, I think the Sharks’ added incentive and strong looking squad will enable them to put up a fight here

Predicted score
Storm 22
Sharks 20

NRL Round 25: Eels v Panthers

While the Eels shocked the NRL world with a terrific win last weekend, Coach Arthur has showed he has zero interest in winning this one. With the Roosters having won their game and Manly over 20 point favourites for their game against the Cowboys, the Eels seem content to come 6th and taken on the Knights in Week 1 of the finals.

The Eels are already missing Matterson to suspension, and Campbell-Gillard to injury, but in addition they are going to be without Clinton Gutherson, Isaiah Papali’I, Junior Paulo, Marata Niukore, Mitchell Moses, Nathan Brown and Waqa Blake.

They are already missing Sivo and Mahoney due to injury, so this is the weakest Eels team that has been put on the park in years.

In contrast they will be up against a Panthers team that is very close to full strength, so the line has rightly been put at close to 30 points!

The Panthers may not be crushing teams like they did in 2020, and Cleary had some worrying moments last weekend against Wests, but they are building nicely and look to be timing their run for the finals.

I do not have too strong an opinion on this one. The Panthers should win by plenty, but they could also be using this game to trial a few things. While the Eels are missing their stars, their squad is still relatively strong due to the very goof NSW Cup team that Arthur has to draw upon.

The Panthers should dominate, but there is not enough value in this one for me to have a bet.

Predicted score
Panthers 36
Eels 6

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