Two teams under pressure should provide for an entertaining contest on Saturday night.
Both Parramatta and Canberra didn’t exactly set the world on fire last week and are heading into this game off the back of losses.
Just as though it looked Parra were going to be issuing a strong challenge to the top 8 they put in an absolute stinker and got flogged by the Sydney Roosters last Sunday. Earlier in the day it was the Raiders who dropped two valuable competition points when they were humbled by the Newcastle Knights 34-20.
While the form of both sides should be the topical talk between punters, Mitchell Moses has stolen all the headlines after he was released from the Wests Tigers to link up with the Eels this week.
PARRAMATTA suffered its worst defeat for quite some time last week and what made it worse was the loss of playmaker Corey Norman.
The star half is out for up to four weeks which sees Will Smith, a one-game player, attempt to fill the role alongside Clint Gutherson.
Brad Arthur’s side was blown away early and never recovered to go down 48-10.
There will definitely be some bounce back in this game, or if you’re an Eels supporter, you would definitely hope there would be! Teams that are usually flogged one week will come out firing the next.
The loss of Norman though will seriously affect their attack which has only been averaging a tick over three tries per game anyway. Does this open the door for Moses to start? Arthur has named him in the squad on an extended bench.
It seems as though the Raiders just can’t get going at all in 2017.
After looking as though they had put their slow start to the season behind them by registering three straight wins, they’ve now dropped three straight to sit tenth on the competition table.
What was interesting about their 14-point defeat at the hands of Newcastle last week as the margin, just the second loss by 13 points or more this season, while their defence went missing and allowed the Knights to score 34 points. Only Cronulla has scored more against Canberra in the current campaign.
Ricky Stuart’s side has won four of the past five against Parramatta including the last two.
Games between these sides are usually high scoring affairs so for those that love having a crack at Total Points the $4.25 @ Sportsbet for Over 48.5 looks awfully tempting when you consider an average of 48.2ppg has been produced in their last five contests.
The loss of Norman is a considerable one which definitely tips the balance of power in favour of Canberra ($1.60 @ TopBetta).
One issue we have with the Green Machine is their lack of a winning record at ANZ Stadium where they have just two wins since 2011. In their only match at the venue this season, they began brightly enough but lost their way in the second 40 minutes to succumb to the Bulldogs 16-10.
The Eels are aiming for three straight wins at the venue after losing against the Sharks at the ground earlier this season.
Both sides are really unpredictable and we don’t blame if you don’t want to have a crack at either of them. The best play here will be Total Points options and 1st Tryscorers with Semi Radradra and Jordan Rapana the obvious ones to cross the line first.
We’ve avoided talking about the Moses saga because it’s dragged on for far too long but it will be interesting to see if he starts or not. Punters should keep a close eye on the team sheets closer to kick off time but if he does line up then you can ensure the spotlight will be firmly on him regardless of whether he blitzes them or fails miserably.
OVER 48.5 TOTAL POINTS