Sydney Roosters – $1.30 at Sportsbet
Newcastle Knights – $3.45
These two teams are both catching their breath after massive hiccoughs last time out.
Sydney’s defeat to North Queensland was their fifth reverse in seven games, leaving them eight points adrift of the league-leading Melbourne Storm.
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The Roosters are also two points shy of South Sydney and level on points with Canberra, so things need to turn around if they are to make sure of a top-four finish.
Newcastle also dropped a game they should have won, falling to a resurgent Canterbury side after leading 6-0 at the interval.
The Knights have now lost three of their last four games, but they have a couple of big inclusions for Saturday’s clash at the SCG.
Sydney Roosters Round 18 team news
The Sydney 17 is shuffled up this week with the return of Boyd Cordner and James Tedesco. Joseph Manu moves to centre and Victor Radley reverts to lock, while Nat Butcher, Isaac Liu and Brett Morris go to the bench. Jake Friend starts at hooker alongside Jared Waerea-Hargreaves, who was cleared by the NRL judiciary committee this week.
Out: Poasa Faamausili, Sitili Tupouniua (both reserves)
In: Boyd Cordner, James Tedesco
Newcastle Knights Round 18 team news
Kalyn Ponga is back after a spell out injured, while Mitchell Barnett returns on the second row after serving a suspension. David Klemmer and Tautau Moga are also named in the starting side, which sees Jamie Buhrer, Herman Ese’ese and Connor Watson parked on the interchange. Aiden Guerra is listed in the reserves alongside Josh King and Mason Lino.
Out: Josh King, Mason Lino (both reserves)
In: Mitchell Barnett, Kalyn Ponga
Roosters vs Knights tryscorer betting tips
Ryan Hall – Five games in and England’s all-time top tryscorer is yet to open his account in the NRL. It is only a matter of time until Hall breaks his duck, so why not this week?
Kalyn Ponga – Do we expect too much of Ponga? The Queensland fullback was in rude tryscoring form for the Knights before his injury and will be itching to make an impact after a few weeks out.
Roosters vs Knights NRL stats and trends
- Sydney lead the league in 40/20 kicks (four), try assists (49) and handling errors (190)
- Roosters fullback James Tedesco beats all comers for line breaks (13) and tackle breaks (89)
- Newcastle have effected more charge downs (six) than any other team this season
- Knights halfback Mitchell Pearce tops the pops for line-break assists (14)
Roosters vs Knights betting predictions
Both these teams have some big ins after a tricky end to the Origin period, so why are the odds so lopsided? Sydney’s form is horrible and there is no guarantee Cordner and Tedesco can fix things straight away. The Knights beat the Roosters earlier this season and have the talismanic Ponga back on the park, so they should make a game of it at the very least.
Newcastle Knights +9.5 – $1.90 at Sportsbet
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