Betfair: NRL Round 8
All the hot tips for the current round of the NRL.
Melbourne (v Newcastle)
3 units at match odds of $1.33 or better
The Storm don't lose two games in a row at home. In fact, they haven't lost two matches on the trot at home since early in the 2005 season. After being shocked on Monday night by the Warriors, the Storm will be ready for a Newcastle team who try hard but are thin thanks to a mounting injury toll.
The Warriors rolled Melbourne thanks to a big and aggressive pack but the Knights don't have the luxury of such forwards and they in all likelihood won't get the luxury of Billy Slater being so off his game as he was on Monday.
The Storm have won 11 of 15 against Newcastle and are going to have few problems with the Knights this time around.
Wests Tigers (v Canberra)
2 units at match odds of $1.70 or better
Benji Marshall has played the Raiders nine times, and on each occasion has come away with the win. If the Raiders have a bogeyman, it is Benji because even when they are playing well, the Tigers No.6 gets them. The Raiders, though, are playing anything but well and they are not about to get any crisper or better prepared with Matt Orford returning. They are just too unorganised with the ball and lifeless without it.
Canberra have lost three in a row at home and it certainly looks like four is on the cards.
St George-Illawarra (v Parramatta)
3 units at match odds of $1.10 or better
2 units at -15.5 handicap odds of $1.85
This may well be a match-up between the best and worst teams in the NRL. The Dragons have class across the park; the Eels have only Nathan Hindmarsh and perhaps Tim Mannah of legitimate rep quality. Jamie Soward is going to have a field day against a poor Parramatta back three while Mark Gasnier and Matt Cooper will slice through the ordinary Eels centre pairing. The Dragons are 21-14 against the spread since the start of last year, the Eels 10-21 over the same period.
St George-Illawarra have won five of six against Parramatta and should extend that on Sunday.
I am loathe to recommend laying so many points but it is hard to see the Eels scoring more than 10 and the Dragons less than 24.