New Zealand Warriors v Melbourne Storm

Friday March 10, 6:00pm – Mt Smart Stadium

Melbourne have been hit hard by injury and departures since their Grand Final appearance last year with star prop Jesse Bromwich the latest in the casualty ward. It shouldn’t matter though against a New Zealand team who were highly disappointing in a win over Newcastle in Round 1. The Storm have won six of their last nine against the Warriors with New Zealand held to 18 or less in seven of those. The Warriors have incredibly failed to cover 11 straight night home games. Melbourne have won 12 of their last 15 home games, a remarkable record.

Betting Strategy

BACK – Melbourne -2.5

Manly Sea Eagles v South Sydney Rabbitohs

Saturday March 11, 5:30pm – Lottoland

All the could go wrong did go wrong for South Sydney in Round 1. A line needs to be put through that performance. Manly didn’t have any of the excuses of Souths but were hardly any better, showing nothing in attack. The loss of two key forwards for Manly weakens an already mediocre pack while Souths could well see Adam Reynolds return. The Sea Eagles have covered just four of their last 13 at Brookvale Oval and just four of their last 12 as a favourite. Souths have covered 23 of their last 41 away from ANZ. Souths have won four of their last six against Manly.

Betting Strategy

BACK – South Sydney +3.5

West Tigers v Penrith Panthers

Sunday March 12, 2:00pm – Campbelltown Stadium

Penrith are surprising road favourites in this one after an appalling display against St George Illawarra in Round 1. The Tigers, by contrast, could not have looked any more impressive in a dominant win over rivals South Sydney. The Tigers have won eight of the last 11 against the Panthers, including four straight at Campbelltown. Home underdogs cover at a rate of 67% dating back to 2008 in the first four rounds. The Tigers have covered four of their last six off a win of 13-plus while the Panthers have beaten the handicapper in just two of their last six off a loss of 13 or more.

Betting Strategy

BACK – West Tigers +1.5