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NRL second semi final preview – Souths vs St George

Regular Season Finish:
South Sydney Rabbitohs: 3rd
St George Dragons: 5th

Premiership Odds:
South Sydney Rabbitohs: $4
St George Dragons: $26

First Final Result:
South Sydney Rabbitohs: defeated by the Melbourne Storm, 28 – 29
St George Dragons: defeated the Brisbane Broncos, 48 – 18

Kick off at ANZ Stadium from 7.40pm

The Bunnies and the Dragons round out the second week of the NRL finals in a match that has the makings of a blow out victory for Souths.

The St George Dragons were the big winners of week one, smashing the Brisbane Broncos away from home. The big red V jumped out to an early lead and never looked in danger as they recorded a huge 30 point win.

The win did come at a cost however with Gareth Widdop re-injuring his shoulder, which has ruled him out for the remainder of the year.

Conversely, the Bunnies suffered a heartbreaking defeat last weekend.

South Sydney was gallant against the Melbourne Storm and the team is arguably unlucky to be playing in the second semi final.

The Rabbitohs led deep into the match before a moment of Cameron Munster brilliance sunk them right before the final whistle.

Souths have the much better team on paper but the Dragons displayed a great level of confidence last weekend. Can lightning strike twice for the big red V?

Team line ups

South Sydney Rabbitohs

1 Alex Johnston, 2 Campbell Graham, 3 Greg Inglis, 4 Dane Gagai, 5 Robert Jennings, 6 Cody Walker, 7 Adam Reynolds, 8 Tom Burgess, 9 Damien Cook, 10 George Burgess, 11 John Sutton, 12 Angus Crichton, 13 Sam Burgess (c)

Interchange: 14 Hymel Hunt, 15 Cameron Murray, 16 Jason Clark, 17 Dean Britt

St George Dragons

1 Matt Dufty, 2 Nene Macdonald, 3 Zac Lomax, 4 Tim Lafai, 5 Jordan Pereira, 6 Kurt Mann, 7 Ben Hunt, 8 James Graham, 9 Cameron McInnes, 10 Leeson Ah Mau, 11 Tyson Frizell, 12 Tariq Sims, 13 Jack de Belin

Interchange: 14 Jeremy Latimore, 15 Hame Sele, 16 Blake Lawrie, 17 Luciano Leilua

Players to watch

Rabbitohs – Damien Cook

The dummy half Cook will need to take control of this match if the Bunnies are to progress. The Dally M Medal contender is a primary attacking option for an already stacked side and we think he’s the must-watch player of the game.

Dragons – Cameron McInnes

The former junior Bunny will be keen to get his side through to the preliminary final stage after a great opening week of the finals. His play style might not be as glamourous as Cook’s but his defensive work is just as important.

Rabbitohs vs Dragons – Who wins?

The Bunnies should bounce back sharply here.

Gareth Widdop is a huge loss for the Dragons. There’s no other way of putting it and an already difficult ask is made all the more difficult due to his absence.

We felt that the Dragons peaked in week one, and while their win was impressive, South Sydney is a huge step-up from the Brisbane Broncos.

Souths were beaten narrowly in what was one of the games of the year by the Storm and they’ll be hungry to atone for that defeat. Back the Bunnies in with confidence.

Result: South Sydney Rabbitohs – $1.25