NRL Projections Update – Round 25, 2017

Results

parramatta-sm Parramatta 52 (15-8) d brisbane-sm Brisbane 34 (15-8)

canberra-sm Canberra 46 (11-12) d newcastle-sm Newcastle 28 (5-18)

north qld-sm North Queensland 22 (13-10) d wests tigers-sm Wests Tigers 14 (6-17)

canterbury-sm Canterbury 26 (9-14) d gold coast titans-sm Gold Coast 14 (7-16)

melbourne-sm Melbourne 64 (19-4) d souths-sm South Sydney 6 (9-14)

sydney city-sm Sydney City 16 (16-7) d cronulla-sm Cronulla 14 (14-9)

manly-sm Manly 22 (13-10) d warriors-sm New Zealand 21 (7-16)

st george illawarra-sm St George Illawarra 16 (12-11) d penrith-sm Penrith 14 (13-10)

Collated Ladder

Now to look ahead to see what the Collated Ladder has predicted for the final standings of the season.

The Collated Ladder is a bit useless now and I’m mostly just publishing it for completeness. For example, it strangely has both Brisbane and North Queensland losing their final round face-off, which is a relic of the way the ladder comes together. Look at the Stocky column for a better bet:

  • 90% of a last win – Sydney
  • 80% of a last win – Melbourne, Parra
  • 70% of a last win – Penrith, St George
  • Approx 50:50 – Brisbane/NQ and Cronulla/Newcastle

Continue reading “NRL Projections Update – Round 25, 2017”

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NRL Projections Update – Round 24, 2017

Results

parramatta-sm Parramatta 30 (14-8) d gold coast titans-sm Gold Coast 8 (7-15)

souths-sm South Sydney 36 (9-13) d warriors-sm New Zealand 18 (7-15)

brisbane-sm Brisbane 24 (15-7) d st george illawarra-sm St George Illawarra 12 (11-11)

melbourne-sm Melbourne 44 (18-4) d newcastle-sm Newcastle 12 (5-17)

sydney city-sm Sydney City 22 (15-7) d wests tigers-sm Wests Tigers 18 (6-16)

cronulla-sm Cronulla 26 (14-8) d north qld-sm North Queensland 16 (12-10)

penrith-sm Penrith 26 (13-9) d canberra-sm Canberra 22 (10-12)

canterbury-sm Canterbury 30 (8-14) d manly-sm Manly 16 (12-10)

Collated Ladder

Now to look ahead to see what the Collated Ladder has predicted for the final standings of the season.

Unsurprisingly, the Collated Ladder is starting to closely resemble the actual ladder. The top six are pretty well safe now and I’d be surprised if their positions change much between now and the end of the season.

Due to some shenanigans in the Stocky (which I elaborate on below), positions 7 through 10 have changed rather significantly from last week, particularly if you’re from North Queensland or the northern beaches of Sydney. Points difference is going to be extremely important to secure the last two finals spots. Here’s what the draw has for the teams in the firing line:

  • Dragons: Panthers, then Bulldogs
  • Raiders: Knights, then Storm
  • Sea Eagles: Warriors, then Panthers
  • Cowboys: Tigers, then Broncos

Given the topsy-turvy form on display in recent weeks (e.g. Tigers, Bulldogs, Knights winning), there’s not what you would call any gimmes in that lot, especially given all four contenders are struggling for form. Undoubtedly, something resembling luck will come into it.

Continue reading “NRL Projections Update – Round 24, 2017”

NRL Projections Update – Round 23, 2017

Results

souths-sm South Sydney 28 (8-13) d canterbury-sm Canterbury 14 (7-14)

newcastle-sm Newcastle 29 (5-16) d parramatta-sm Parramatta 10 (13-8)

brisbane-sm Brisbane 32 (14-7) d cronulla-sm Cronulla 10 (13-8)

st george illawarra-sm St George Illawarra 42 (11-10) d gold coast titans-sm Gold Coast 16 (7-14)

melbourne-sm Melbourne 16 (17-4) d sydney city-sm Sydney City 13 (14-7)

penrith-sm Penrith 24 (12-9) d north qld-sm North Queensland 16 (12-9)

canberra-sm Canberra 36 (10-11) d warriors-sm New Zealand 16 (7-14)

wests tigers-sm Wests Tigers 30 (6-15) d manly-sm Manly 26 (12-9)

Collated Ladder

Now to look ahead to see what the Collated Ladder has predicted for the final standings of the season.

Melbourne are currently sitting on sixteen wins and are projected to take eighteen. With three games to go and playing very well, that might be more like nineteen by the end of the regular season. Brisbane and Sydney City close out the top three spots, just as they do now. Both sides are going to stay at least four points off the pace.

The remaining spots are interesting. Penrith in the top four? They’re currently only two points off Cronulla, who are not playing well. Three wins for the Panthers and two for the Sharks would not be a surprising outcome. The Collated Ladder also has the Cowboys not far off the pace and there’s not much to separate them – Stocky wins and Pythag are very close for all three. Fourth place is very important as almost all of the premiership winners of the last twenty years have finished in the top four.

Continue reading “NRL Projections Update – Round 23, 2017”

NRL Projections Update – Round 22, 2017

I’m running a bit short on time this week, so I’ll dispense with the usual round up of matches and dive straight into it.

Actually, I’ll take one moment to say that I watched five of the eight games on the weekend (missed the Saturday fixtures) and the Souths-Saints game was the best of the lot. It might be because my expectations were so low but that was a hell of a finish from the Bunnies.

Round 22 Results

parramatta-sm Parramatta 20 (13-7) d canterbury-sm Canterbury 4 (7-13)

souths-sm South Sydney 26 (7-13) d st george illawarra-sm St George Illawarra 24 (10-10)

melbourne-sm Melbourne 26 (15-5) d north qld-sm North Queensland 8 (12-8)

newcastle-sm Newcastle 26 (4-16) d warriors-sm New Zealand 10 (7-13)

brisbane-sm Brisbane 54 (13-7) d gold coast titans-sm Gold Coast 0 (7-13)

canberra-sm Canberra 30 (9-11) d cronulla-sm Cronulla 12 (13-7)

manly-sm Manly 36 (12-8) d sydney city-sm Sydney City 18 (14-6)

penrith-sm Penrith 28 (11-9) d wests tigers-sm Wests Tigers 14 (5-15)

Continue reading “NRL Projections Update – Round 22, 2017”

NRL Projections Update – Round 21, 2017

I think rugby league historians prefer the expression “dour” when they really mean “boring” game. The Panthers-Bulldogs match on Thursday night will not be making much of an impression in the record books and so I think we’re safe to use the expression “boring”. The teams went to the break at Pepper Stadium even but we all knew something from the Panthers was coming and they delivered, scoring two more tries and taking the win.

The Sharks were never in any real doubt against the Warriors in Auckland on Friday night. The Warriors out-errored the league leaders in the field and lost out in possession, the kicking game and the game overall to the Sharks. The Broncos were in the picture in the first half against the Eels, sprinting out to a twelve point lead in the first ten minutes. The Eels got level quickly and kept the Broncos’ playmakers quiet and out-muscled their forward pack. Jonus Pearson was a liability on the Brisbane wing, slipping over half a dozen times, while Corey Norman and Mitchell Moses have formed a solid combo in the Eels’ halves, steering Parramatta to a win.

After dismantling Manly the week before, the question was “Are St George good again?” The answer was a resounding “no”. Everything went the Knights’ way for a change in front of a good turnout in Newcastle. With only a narrow lead at half time, the expectation was that the Knights would fade away but they kept the Dragons out and sealed the win with a late try and field goal. Taking a 3-1 try lead into the break, Canberra were in control of their rendezvous with Souths. The Raiders eventually took the win after the full eighty, despite a late consolation try for the Bunnies, avoiding the need for the childish meltdowns that has marked more recent Canberra losses. At Allianz, the Cowboys stormed to an early lead and looked in pole position to take a somewhat surprising win. The Roosters showed why they are in contention for this year’s minor premiership and overall premiership by pegging the Cows back to even and then taking the lead by the three-quarter mark. The Roosters kept the Cowboys at bay for the remaining quarter of the tense affair to take the two points.

Melbourne demolished Manly on Sunday afternoon for Cameron Smiths’ 350th game. The Sea Eagles were only down by six at half time before the Storm monstered their way through the second half to take a commanding win. Manly have now suffered two big losses in a row, raising questions over their form. On the Gold Coast, the Titans basically handed the Tigers a win on a platter. Any time the Gold Coast looked dangerous or in a scoring position, they managed to drop the ball or pass it forward. Wests’ execution was cleaner and netted them two points in an otherwise unentertaining game.

Round 21 Results

penrith-sm Penrith 16 (10-9) d canterbury-sm Canterbury 8 (7-12)

cronulla-sm Cronulla 26 (13-6) d warriors-sm New Zealand 12 (7-12)

parramatta-sm Parramatta 28 (12-7) d brisbane-sm Brisbane 14 (12-7)

newcastle-sm Newcastle 21 (3-16) d st george illawarra-sm St George Illawarra 14 (10-9)

canberra-sm Canberra 32 (8-11) d souths-sm South Sydney 18 (6-13)

sydney city-sm Sydney City 22 (14-5) d north qld-sm North Queensland 16 (12-7)

melbourne-sm Melbourne 40 (14-5) d manly-sm Manly 6 (11-8)

wests tigers-sm Wests Tigers 26 (5-14) d gold coast titans-sm Gold Coast 4 (7-12)

Continue reading “NRL Projections Update – Round 21, 2017”

NRL Projections Update – Round 20, 2017

The Broncos kicked off round 20 by throttling the Bulldogs. Brisbane were on from the gun and Canterbury were in the contest for the first twenty minutes before conceding late tries before half time. The Broncos returned after the break firing and after securing a series of repeat sets in the third quarter, ran the Bulldogs to exhaustion and piled on the points.

The Knights are almost not worth commenting on anymore. One try came in the thirtieth minute for Newcastle but otherwise it was one-way traffic to Bondi. The Roosters accumulated tries throughout the game to run out comfortable winners. Souths were never in the contest against Cronulla. There was a whiff of upset but the Sharks showed up early, used their league-leading defence to keep the error-riddled Rabbitohs at bay and didn’t leave themselves too much work to do, to the delight of the home crowd.

Saturday saw three wins with each going the way they were expected to but with none decided by more than twelve points. The Titan succumbed to the Panthers at Pepper Stadium. Gold Coast had an early lead and went into half time near even but Penrith took control in the second half and took the win. In Canberra, the Raiders reinforced their reputation for crappy discipline with some big, late hits on Storm players. That didn’t stop Melbourne from outplaying the home team but injury concerns for the Storm now hang over their premiership chances. North Queensland played out a scrappy contest with New Zealand in Townsville. The Cowboys made fewer errors and had just enough attacking panache to outpace the Warriors and carry the two points.

In the Tips post, I suggested that despite the massively lopsided nature of this round, a couple of upsets were still on the cards. The Dragons duly obliged by obliterating the Sea Eagles. Manly were down by thirty at half time and nearly managed to drag themselves back into it before Saints re-accelerated and left them behind. At ANZ, a western Sydney derby played out in front of 30,000 people. They were treated to a close contest, albeit one with a significant number of errors. Parramatta just edged out Wests with a field goal in the final ten minutes. The Tigers were unable to respond and sank.

Round 20 Results

brisbane-sm Brisbane 42 (12-6) d canterbury-sm Canterbury 12 (6-12)

sydney city-sm Sydney City 28 (13-5) d newcastle-sm Newcastle 4 (2-16)

cronulla-sm Cronulla 26 (12-6) d souths-sm South Sydney 12 (6-12)

penrith-sm Penrith 24 (9-9) d gold coast titans-sm Gold Coast 16 (7-11)

melbourne-sm Melbourne 20 (14-4) d canberra-sm Canberra 14 (7-11)

north qld-sm North Queensland 24 (12-6) d warriors-sm New Zealand 12 (7-11)

st george illawarra-sm St George Illawarra 52 (10-8) d manly-sm Manly 22 (11-7)

parramatta-sm Parramatta 17 (11-7) d wests tigers-sm Wests Tigers 16 (4-14)

Continue reading “NRL Projections Update – Round 20, 2017”

NRL Projections Update – Round 19, 2017

Nathan Cleary confirmed his future superstar status by carrying the Penrith Panthers on his back, leading them to a win over the Warriors to open round 19. His elephantine performance had Penrith in control for the last sixty minutes of the game leading to only the Warriors’ second loss at Mt Smart Stadium this year. Canberra got home in golden point over St George Illawarra in a game that it looked like no one wanted to actually win. After an exchange of wayward field goal attempts, the game wrapped up 14-all at full time. The Raiders pushed on with a 40/20 from Aidan Sezer giving them the field position to set up the golden try.

The Broncos were at risk of a post-Origin loss to the Knights. It seemed like it might head that way when Newcastle led 12-6 at half time. A fired-up Broncos returned to the field and put the sword to the Knights, coming home comfortable winners. On the Gold Coast, torrential rain led to some questioning whether the game should continue. It did because they are professional football players and taking bodily risks is part of the job description. In what I would have described as the biggest upset of the season if it hadn’t already happened in round 8, the Titans dominated the Sharks, not even giving them the opportunity to claw their way back in.

Manly made their win over Wests a lot harder than expected in front of a packed Brookvale Oval. Despite the Sea Eagles scoring two tries in the first ten minutes, the Tigers managed to go into half time in front. Manly kicked it up a gear in the second half and ran in three unanswered tries to pick up the two points. The Rabbitohs took the final game of the round to Cairns and were promptly battered into submission by a rampant Cowboys side. North Queensland barely had to get into gear before building a solid lead that Souths were never able to threaten. The conclusive win for the Cowboys was not enough to lift them further up the ladder.

Round 19 Results

penrith-sm Penrith 34 (8-9) d warriors-sm New Zealand 22 (7-10)

canberra-sm Canberra 18 (7-10) d st george illawarra-sm St George Illawarra 14 (9-8)

brisbane-sm Brisbane 34 (11-6) d newcastle-sm Newcastle 22 (2-14)

gold coast titans-sm Gold Coast 30 (7-10) d cronulla-sm Cronulla 10 (11-6)

manly-sm Manly 28 (11-6) d wests tigers-sm Wests Tigers 16 (4-13)

north qld-sm North Queensland 23 (11-6) d souths-sm South Sydney 10 (6-11)

Continue reading “NRL Projections Update – Round 19, 2017”