NRL

JT’s Useless Previews: The NRL, Round 7 (ANZAC Round)

The Silhouette on the Roosters jumper for Thursday’s game against the Dragons
(Photo: Sydney Roosters)

Have you noticed how thanks to ANZAC Day being on a Thursday this year, every day of Round 7 will have 2 games?

That’s a beautiful piece of symmetry right there.

ANZAC DAY

Sydney vs St George Illawarra @ The SCG, 4:05pm AEST

The last time an ANZAC Day game was played at the SCG was all the way back in 1986, when defending premiers Canterbury gave Souths (Who ended up 2nd on the ladder) a touch-up 26-2, with Andrew Farrar and Peter Mortimer scoring a pair of doubles.

Of course, this fixture has been played at the SFS ever since it was first conceived back in 2002, and in recent years, St George have a habit of winning the big game, then falling away by the end of the season, where as the Roosters usually do the opposite of falling away and end up challenging deep into September.

The Roosters come in winning 5 in a row, the Dragons have figured out this winning thing and have won 4 in a row, the weather for tomorrow should be fine, but it is Sydney in Autumn, so there could be a repeat of the lovely weather from 2015.

It was only fitting that Mitch Rein scored a try in that weather.

Melbourne vs New Zealand @ AAMI Park, 7:50pm AEST

Based on the Warriors’ performance last week and how close the Storm came to completing the mega comeback against the Roosters, is it even worth writing a preview for the 2nd leg of the ANZAC Double?

You know what the weather was at AAMI Park for last year’s ANZAC Game?

A top of 50 with a low of 10.

FRIDAY

Canterbury vs North Queensland @ ANZ Stadium, 6:00pm AEST

The ‘JT Played For Us’ Cup!

Source: Canterbury Bulldogs

The Cowboys achieved the impossible in New Zealand and actually managed to win without Jason Taumalolo, which made you forget that they had actually won a game before then, while the Dogs are now living in the cellar and happily paying the rent, as their defensive effort against Souths was ‘different’ and shut the Bunnies down for the final 50 minutes.

Unfortunately, Dean Pay forgot to tell his players that you actually have to score tries to win games, a concept that the Dogs struggle with thanks to a lack of experience in the halves- 2 tries in their last 2 games.

But, In a show of faith, he’s named an unchanged lineup for Friday.

By the time the Dogs players stop slowing down the Cowboys in the play the ball, the round will have finished.

Penrith vs Souths @ Panthers Stadium, 7:55pm AEST

The Gus Gould Menace was removed on Tuesday by the Panthers hierarchy, like Darth Vader chucking Palpatine down the shaft at the end of Return of the Jedi, meaning the Nine-year long Five-year Rebuild can finally commence!

Penrith’s blowing of the 14 point lead against the Sharks seemed to coincide with Dean Whare going off the field in the 2nd half, thanks to an injury caused by a Japanese fan throwing a harpoon at his hamstring, mistaking his surname for ‘Whale’.

Meanwhile, Souths are still winning, but they’re not Charlie Sheen ‘winning’, getting over the Warriors and Bulldogs to sit in the caboose of the 5-1 train, which is something resembling a glass half-full or glass half-empty situation.

Who cares about the result, this Panthers team should have a weight off their shoulders, knowing Gus has once again been confined to the Channel Nine commentary box, where he can only cause harm to viewers, instead of football teams.

SATURDAY

Wests Tigers vs Gold Coast @ Scully Park, Tamworth, 5:30pm AEST

This week, Wests are changing their name to ‘Northeast Tigers’ as they hit the road to the Capital of Country Music, Tamworth!

Superb move, because the location is so precise that the Titans are still getting on a plane, instead of travelling for a few hours on the Greyhound down the highway.

Should’ve scheduled the game in Grafton, so the Titans players could’ve driven there.

The Tigers got smashed like a child’s Easter Egg against the Eels in the grand opening of Bankwest Stadium, a historic 51-6 ball-tearing, which was so embarrassing that Mitchell Moses, who is now hanging Tiger pelts in his living room, kicked a field goal at the end, just to piss them off.

Meanwhile, the Titans made it consecutive victories when they easily defeated Newcastle at home, which was soured by Ryan James having his season ended by an ACL tear in the opening minutes, and Kevin Proctor didn’t even play after pulling up stiff on Sunday morning.

The Titans have an odd habit of beating up the Tigers in Sydney, so they’ll try and rephrase that to beating up the Tigers in New South Wales.

Brisbane vs Cronulla @ Suncorp Stadium, 7:35pm AEST

At last, the Sharks can have their revenge for the 1997 Super League Grand Final, a loss so bad it caused Scott Morrison to supposedly soil himself in the Engadine McDonald’s later that evening.

22 years on from ‘The Soiling’, the Broncos are in a world of Payne, now that Haas is in the team, and also for the simple fact that the Broncs are 1-5 and on their worst start to a season this millennium, which I can’t say I’m disappointed about, probably because I’m not.

The Sharks were 14 points down at the half against the Panthers, but with ScoMo shadowing in the stands, they scored three tries in the final 20 minutes to pinch an improbable 2 points.

I wouldn’t be surprised if Paul Gallen sits this one out, just so the Queenslanders can’t say to him “We inflicted your First Grade record 167th loss at Lang Park, you New South Wales -“

SUNDAY

Manly vs Canberra @ Lottoland, 2:00pm AEST

The Sea Eagles were pretty unlucky in every sense of the word unlucky against the Dragons, conceding a try in the dying minutes before missing out on an obstruction penalty (For an escort) on the final play, which ‘could’ve’ taken the game into Golden Point.

Meanwhile, the Green Machine is Red Hot, as they took down the Broncos to make it 4 wins in a row, and narrowly missed out on going to the top of the ladder over Melbourne & Sydney thanks to Jack Bird’s consolation try for the Broncs.

The Raiders are an efficient defensive Green Machine in 2019, ranking as the #1 defence in the game with 66 points conceded, while Manly have been whipped into shape by Des to sit in 5th, conceding an even 20 points a game.

If you go take out Rounds 1 & 2, that number drops to 13.5.

Then again, 73.6% of all statistics are made up.

Might be the game of the week right here!

Newcastle vs Parramatta @ McDonald Jones Stadium, 4:05pm AEST

Electric Edric vs the ‘Eelectric’ Eels.

Apparently Nathan Brown will be unceremoniously beheaded if the Knights manage to lose their sixth consecutive game, which is extremely likely, especially after the Eels went from being shutout in Canberra to scoring 51 points on Easter Monday, a display so awesome it was like looking at an Apache Helicopter in full flight, and making them a pretty warm favourite for this game.

So the man waiting to apparently replace Brownie is another superb nude nut in Craig Fitzgibbon, former Clive Churchill Medalist, captain of the Roosters, NSW and Australia representative, and one of the few former Illawarra Steelers players that hasn’t fled into exile.

Fitz once owned the Knights in his playing days, especially with a try like this to sink them in the 2002 finals.


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