Big Marns Round 20 Betting Preview | NRL Betting Tips

Big Marn gives his take on round 20. He likes a couple of the underdogs at the line.

Darryl Brohman
Thu, 20 Jul, 2:33 AM



Bulldogs +9.5

Roosters 13+

Cronulla 13+

Storm 13+


Approximate Odds: $21.50

BRISBANE BRONCOS vs CANTERBURY BULLDOGS – Thursday 7.50pm, Suncorp Stadium

This is an interesting game to start the round as in recent times the Bulldogs have had the wood over the Broncos (winning four of their past 5 encounters).


This Broncos team is probably not going as well as their position on the ladder suggests. They’ve been struggling to put teams away, including the Knights last week.


I just think the Dogs could really lift for this one. They’re a team that generally performs really well when their backs are to the wall. I think they can match it with the Broncs here and I want to be on them with the +9.5. I do think the Broncos will get over the line for the win but there’s no way I would back them at such short odds.


Despite generally being a team that takes a while to get going in their matches, I think the Dogs will come out hard and can jag the first try. Let’s side with Brett Morris, who will be looking to get over NSW’s shocking showing in game 3 as quickly as possible!


Outright Match Winner:




First Try Scorer:


SYDNEY ROOSTERS vs NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS - Friday night 6pm, Allianz Stadium

Let’s be honest, it doesn’t take a genius to pick the likely winner of this game!


The Roosters, coming off the bye, have actually been quite poor in recent weeks. They were smashed by the Sharks a few weeks back, before scoring a narrow (and somewhat lucky) win over the Rabbitohs a week later. They’ve also got a few injuries to contend with here with the likes of Jake Friend and Michael Gordon out. However, they do get their Origin stars back, which should provide a huge boost.


All that being said, they should beat the Knights VERY easily. They normally beat poor sides by big margins and there’s no question the Knights are a VERY poor side!


Outright Match Winner:


Margin Betting


First Try Scorer:


CRONULLA SHARKS vs SOUTH SYDNEY RABBITOHS - Friday 7.50pm, Southern Cross Stadium

Shane Flanagan came out last Sunday saying there’s no more excuses for the Sharks, and he’s bang on! It’s time to get serious!


To me, when the Sharks have to play well they do. It’s the games when they’re expected to win they just seem to take the foot off the pedal and coast. I think this weekend’s game is an important one for the Sharks and their top 4 aspirations – so I expect them to come out all guns blazing.


Outside of the Penrith game a few weeks ago, the Bunnies have been awful in 2017. I can see the Sharks, with Maloney back in the team, giving them a bit of a touch up here. So let’s go 13+ and I like Ricky Leutele for first tryscorer – he’s found the line a fair bit this year and imagine he will again against Souths.


Outright Match Winner:


Margin Betting:


First Try Scorer:


PENRITH PANTHERS vs GOLD COAST TITANS - Saturday 3.00pm, Pepper Stadium

This match looms as a great battle between the two halves (Cleary and Taylor) who were probably the standout players of the round last week.


The Titans have a solid record against the Panthers in recent times. They’ve won 2 of the past 3 with the one loss being a 1 point defeat last year. I think the loser of this match can kiss their top 8 chances goodbye so I expect a really intense contest


I do really like the Panthers, but they’ve been a nightmare to follow this year – up and down like a damn yoyo! However, they get Moylan and Wallace back this week and for that reason I simply have to side with them!


I think it’d be foolish to back them to win by any more than 12 because the Titans are a gritty team who always keep hanging in there and fighting. For first tryscorer I like Isaah Yeo, he’s only bagged 2 tries this year but he always looks a danger out on that left side attack.


Outright Match Winner:


Margin Betting:


First Try Scorer:



This shapes as an intriguing game. The Raiders in general have a good record against the Storm in Canberra but they’re just not playing well. They were lucky to get away with the 2 points last week after an Aidan Sezer intercept changed the course of the match late on. They’ve got quite a tough run in and I can’t see them making the 8 – something I definitely wasn’t expecting at the start of the season.


Meanwhile, the Storm get all their big guns back on deck this week and look hard to beat. To be honest, if you discounted the history between these two you’d be convinced the Storm would win with ease. However, I look at their record and it worries me a little bit! The Raiders were comfortable 22-8 winners against the Storm at GIO Stadium last year. I similar result here wouldn’t shock.


In saying that, I can’t not tip the Storm. When I look at the side on paper, they’ve just got a brilliant all round team. So, weighing everything up, I’m siding with the Storm 13+, although I wouldn’t put the house on it! For first tryscorer how can you not take Suliasi Vunivalu! This bloke scores tries for fun and invariably gets the first of the match!


Outright Match Winner:


Half / Full Double


First Try Scorer:



The Cowboys have not convinced me in 2017 but I think they have now won three in a row so I guess they are starting to prove me wrong! Perhaps the loss of Johnathan Thurston has galvanized the rest of the squad to up their performances to compensate. There’s no doubt the like of Jake Granville, Lachlan Coote and Michael Morgan have all lifted in JT’s absence.


To be honest, they come up against a team here who I simply don’t have much time for! The Warriors will have a crack but they only seem to put things together about once a month… Not good enough at this level! With Shaun Johnson gone they really lose a ton of creative flair in attack and they simply don’t have the defense to cover for that loss.


I’m confident in taking the Cowboys 13+ here. I also like Te Maire Martin for first tryscorer – he’s scored a few since moving to the Cowboys and I wouldn’t be surprised to see that continue!


Outright Match Winner:


Margin Betting


First Try Scorer:



This is a big game for both of these sides. For the Dragons, the pressure is on to stay inside the top 8, whilst the same scenario is playing out for Manly’s top 4 aspirations.


I watched both these two teams go around last week and didn’t think either was overly impressive. The Dragons have well and truly fallen into a rut – especially in attack. On the upside, their defense is still OK. And they also get Euan Aitken back this weekend, which is a huge plus in my book.


However, when looking at these two on paper, I see far more attacking potency in the Sea Eagles lineup. Tom Trbojevic, Dylan Walker and Cherry Evans are all going great guns this year. One big negative for the Eagles is the absence of Apisai Koroisau. He’s been tremendous for them this year and I rate him as one of the best hookers in the comp! However, even with him out, I still can’t tip the Dragons


Let’s take Manly 1-12 – I think the Dragons will lift but they just won’t be good enough. For first tryscorer I’m taking a bit of value and siding with the Manly five-eighth, Blake Green.

Outright Match Winner:


Margin Betting

MANLY 1-12

First Try Scorer:


WESTS TIGERS vs PARRAMATTA EELS – Sunday 4.00pm, ANZ Stadium

This would usually shape as a blockbuster Sunday afternoon match-up between two fierce rivals. Unfortunately, it’s hard to get too excited about any Tigers match this year…


The Eels are building nicely into this season – they’re looking stronger and stronger as the season goes on. I don’t think they’re by any means premiership contenders, but they’re definitely a good, solid team. Mitchell Moses is really starting to settle in at his new club and see them making the top 8 for sure.


At the end of the day, I expect the Eels to just be a bit too professional for the Tigers. I’m siding with them 13+ and getting on Clinton Gutherson for first tryscorer, he’s had a fantastic season thus far.


Outright Match Winner:


Margin Betting

EELS 13+

First Try Scorer:


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