Read more

Kangaroos look to have too many guns for Kiwi Test showdown

The 2012 rugby league season finally comes to an end when the Kangaroos ($1.18) and Kiwis ($5.10) square off in a Test match in Townsville. It will be the second meeting of the year for the trans-Tasman rivals following the 20-12 win posted by the Kangaroos in April’s Anzac Test in Auckland.

For the first time since entering the big time in 1988, the Broncos won’t have a player in the Kangaroos line-up. That is surprising, although injured trio Thaiday, Hodges and Yow Yeh would have presumably been automatic selection, but what would be even more amazing is if the Kiwis prevailed on Saturday night.

Both teams have their injury concerns and once again the Kiwis are missing their English-based stars, but on paper the Kangaroos seemingly have far too many weapons in attack. Tamou, Scott and Myles will pound the football with monotonous regularity, Smith, Bird and Gallen will wreak havoc in the ruck, Thurston and Cronk will keep their opponents guessing, and on top of that Slater, Inglis, Boyd and the Morris twins have the size and speed to worry the Kiwis’ defence out wide.

All four members of the Kangaroos bench also bring a touch of class to the table. The Kiwis boasts plenty of size and it’s hard to see Mannering, Bromwich, Pritchard, the feisty Luke, and debutants Kasiano and Proctor taking a backward step. The Kiwis bench of Matulino, Eastwood, Blair and Taylor provides an element of variety.

For the visitors to have any chance it’s imperative their backline delivers in both attack and defence. Apart from Foran, Perrett and perhaps Inu, the rest of the outside men may find it tough going. Yes, even Marshall. The NZ captain has had an ordinary season and it’s hard to see him containing Thurston or playing a pivotal role in an unlikely Kiwis victory.

Hoffman, Beale and Whare can make an impact, so long as the Kiwis gell as one unit because none of those players is likely to produce an individual match-winning performance. The Kiwis have shocked the Kangaroos in the past on Australian soil when labelled as a clear underdog, but on this occasion you can back the home side to win by a 13 plus margin ($1.80) with confidence.  For a bit of value, perhaps you should take the line as the Kangaroos are giving 15.5 start at $2.05.

Graham (Cowboys) and Tolman (Bulldogs) were unlucky not to crack the Kangaroos team ahead of Boyd and Williams, and did Farah deserve his spot in the team ahead of Rabbitohs recruit and former Broncos player Te’o? Meanwhile, the Kiwis were happy to overlook Warera-Hargraves (Roosters), McKendry (Panthers) and Johnson (Warriors).

Don’t worry all you New Zealand supporters. The Kangaroos may get the Kiwis this weekend, but next weekend the All Blacks can turn the tables when they meet the Wallabies in Brisbane.

It was a wonderful start to the A-League last weekend with the final result in all five games baffling just about every punter across the nation. With injuries affecting a number of clubs already, and with players missing because of World Cup duty for either the Socceroos or All Whites, it might be wise to stick with the home teams in Round 2. The bookies believe all five home teams will dominate this weekend, and it’s hard to argue, but how can you be certain following an unpredictable Round 1?

One thing is for certain: the Roar-Victory, especially, Mariners-Glory and Sydney-Jets games should attract big crowds and a large television audience.



Leave a Reply

  • Plenty of Paine for Tim Posted on: Jan 2nd, 2017

    He suffered a shocking thumb injury, and unfortunately for Tasmanian wicketkeeper Tim Paine it came at the wrong time…

Read more