Canterbury Bulldogs vs. Melbourne Storm
MATCH UP STATS
Canterbury Bulldogs vs. Melbourne Storm
Premiership odds:Canterbury Bulldogs: $23 @ Crownbet.com.auMelbourne Storm: $7.50 @ Crownbet.com.au
Line betting:Canterbury Bulldogs: +1.5 ($1.91 @ Crownbet.com.au)Melbourne Storm: -1.5 ($1.91 @ Crownbet.com.au)
Friday, March 3 from 6pm at Belmore Sports Ground.
FRIDAY night presents a mouth-watering clash between two teams which have premiership aspirations in 2017.
The Bulldogs will be looking to turn around a poor end to the 2016 season which resulted in four-consecutive losses.
Canterbury will kick off the season against the Storm at home in Belmore, where it has won eight of the last 16 games.
There’s plenty of confidence within the Bulldogs camp this year and getting a win against the Melbourne Storm would be the best possible way to start the season.
The Storm has played at Belmore on two occasions and come up empty both times. The 2016 premiership runners up have been heavily-supported to win this season and we’re expecting more money to come for the consistent franchise throughout the season.
The Storm will field its usual stars, including Cooper Cronk and Cameron Smith, but there are some key changes which could take getting used to.
Former fullback Cameron Munster will play in the halves while Cooper Cronk and Young Tonumaipea will play at the back. Many Storm fans are liking the idea of Munster getting his hands on the ball and we think it’s a good sign for the Storm.
Captain Cameron Smith is looking forward to the coming season, but admits playing at suburban venues poses a challenge for his side. The Storm were manhandled at Belmore in 2015 and Smith believes they’re better prepared this season.
“We’ve played at some pretty intimidating grounds over the years,” Smith said.
“We seem to draw the Wests Tigers fairly often on a Sunday afternoon at Leichhardt Oval, we get Manly at Brookvale nearly every year, and they’re probably two of the hardest away games to play.
“But that game at Belmore was definitely something else. But as I said, we know what to expect now – well most of the squad do – and I’m sure we’ll be better prepared to know how to handle the occasion.”
The Bulldogs have a team capable of holding their own at home on Friday night, despite paying +100 at Ladbrokes.com.au to win.
With a halves pairing of Josh Reynolds and Moses Mbye, centres Josh Morris and Brenko Lee and a forward pack featuring James Graham and David Klemmer, the Bulldogs have the spine needed to compete at a high level.
The $23 to win the premiership suggests there’s a few other teams with betting winning credentials, but this team should gel immediately and a win on Friday night would propel its confidence levels.
Bulldogs vs. Storm first try-scorer betting
League punters love having a bet on the first try-scorer and there are many high-profile players to invest on this Friday.
This option is great for punters wanting a quick payout and the odds available are worth the high risk.
Bulldogs confirmed team and try-scoring odds:
1. Will Hopoate – +1700
2. Brett Morris – $11
3. Josh Morris – $15
4. Brenko Lee – $11
5. Kerrod Holland – $11
6. Josh Reynolds – $26
7. Moses Mbye – $23
8. Aiden Tolman – $76
9. Michael Lichaa – $36
10. James Graham – $46
11. Josh Jackson – $31
12. Greg Eastwood – $51
13. David Klemmer – $36
Brett Morris is our best pick for the Bulldogs. One half of the Morris Brothers duo, Brett has a knack of scoring the first try of the game and the $11 available at Sportsbet is a great price.
The Bulldogs rely heavily on their wingers and along with Kerrod Holland ($11), Morris should be ready to fire on all cylinders.
Storm confirmed team and try-scoring options:
1. Young Tonumaipea – $19
2. Suliasi Vunivalu – +700
3. Will Chambers – $14
4. Cheyse Blair – $15
5. Josh Addo-Carr – $9
6. Cameron Munster – $19
7. Cooper Cronk – $20
8. Jesse Bromwich – $34
9. Cameron Smith – $51
10. Jordan McLean – $67
11. Felise Kaufusi – $36
12. Kenneath Bromwich – $10
13. Dale Finucane – $41
It comes as no surprise that Rookie Winger of the Year Suliasi Vunivalu is the favourite to score first this Friday night.
The Fijian-born winger is a try-scoring freak and he will get his chance to show his skills in this game. Look for Vunivalu to target the wing of Kerrod Holland who can be susceptible on defense.
Josh Addo-Carr should also be considered at $9 with Sportsbet. The new recruit will be eager to show off his skills and there has been plenty of betting support.
Bulldogs vs. Storm game tips
It’s tough to go against the Storm, which is the more talented team on paper, but we’re going to take a gamble on Friday night.
Nothing much has changed for the Bulldogs this season. It retains most of its core players and having Sam Kasiano coming of the bench is a threat most teams don’t have.
It doesn’t have the same talent as the Storm, but we’re predicting that the Storm will need a few weeks to start gelling and playing at Belmore hasn’t been easy for the Storm in two previous games.
Getting even money for the Bulldogs at home would be a nice way of kicking off Friday night football for another season and we think the Bulldogs are going to edge out the Storm by four points.
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