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NRL News

Every week The Defensive Centre takes a look at the game and the media that reports on it (except for the next few weeks because TDC is heading bush just when his NRL Fantasy team will need him most). Cherry-Evans signs with the Titans DCE has left the fortress and is headed north, to the Gold Coast. In doing so…
Game 1: Broncos vs Rabbitohs Venue: Suncorp Stadium Odds: $2.65 vs $1.62 Why Rabbitohs: After being crowned NRL Champions, the Rabbits keep hopping along, following up a successful NRL season with a great World Cup Challenge. Obviously superman Sam Burgess is a huge loss, but the Glenn Stewart pick up gives the team the experience it needs. Why Broncos: Two…
Jarryd Hayne has announced he'll be joining the San Francisco 49ers training camp for 2015. Hayne's contract comes with very little job security, he could be cut at a moments notice, but it will get him in learning an NFL system and that will be key to any possibility of him making a roster. He'll join 90 other players in…
Thursday 5th March 2015 Brisbane Broncos vs South Sydney RabbitohsSuncorp Stadium, 8.05pm AEDT, 10.05pm NZT #NRLBriSou Broncos; 1. Jordan Kahu 2. Dale Copley 3. Jack Reed 4. Justin Hodges 5. Lachlan Maranta 6. Anthony Milford 7. Ben Hunt 8. Josh McGuire 9. Andrew McCullough 10. Adam Blair 11. Alex Glenn 12. Sam Thaiday 13. Corey Parker. Interchange; 14. Mitchell Dodds…

Penrith Panthers 2015 Team preview

Coach Ivan Cleary and General Manager Gus Gould have turned the Panthers around over the last two seasons. The Panthers now look prepared to capitalise on two years of toil as they aspire to premiership glory in 2015. Key Losses Kevin Kingston, Tim Grant and Kevin Naiqama are no longer with the Panthers although none featured heavily in the NRL…

Only in the NRL

Every week The Defensive Centre takes a look at the game and the media that reports on it. White line fever The Titan’s have been dragged through the mud again, this time with allegations that current players and ex-players were using/distributing cocaine. After the allegations were made public, the team was told they couldn’t train at a school they were…

Team List Tuesday is Back!

Yes, that's right. The NRL appear to have grown a spine and stood up to the betting agencies. TLT is back people! In a move that shocked many fantasy rugby league fans, the NRL decided to bow down to betting agency pressure and move the naming of official team lists to Wednesday evenings for the upcoming season. Thankfully, someone in…
The Cowboys struggled on the road and struggled in close games again in 2014 and with the window slowly closing on club legend Jonathan Thurston can they finally get it right in 2015? Key Losses The key loss for the Cowboys in the offseason was Tariq Sims, both the Sims brothers departed the Cowboys this offseason with Tariq joining his…
The Broncos squeaked into the finals last year, a big underachievement for a side stocked with Origin and international talent. With the return of the Super Coach can we expect to see a more consistent Broncos side in 2015? Key Losses While to some Broncos fans it will not seem like a huge loss, the departure of Ben Barba to…
The Warriors started their pre-season with a less than convincing win against a spirited, but sloppy Panthers outfit in Rotorua on Saturday. In what was a home coming for a number of Panthers’ players, the game failed to provide a usually open affair for a pre-season clash. The first half was all about the Warriors’ defence, holding out four back-to-back…
I have seen the upcoming World Club Series copping plenty of flak from fans. Most of this is directed at the fact that the two teams from Australia taking place are St. George Illawarra and Brisbane, two sides who failed to get any further than the first week of the finals in the NRL. However, I believe that most of…
Following on from last weeks introduction to predictive stats article and my inflammatory piece on JT here is the first of four previews that attempts to predict how 2015 will end up. First up we have a look at the four sides I think are most likely to prop up the table. Wests Tigers 2014 record: 10-14 (13th) 2014 Expected…
In our second group of teams I have four teams that I struggle to get a read on. This means that their range between best and worst case scenarios is pretty big depending on what factors play out during the season. Newcastle Knights 2014 record: 10-14 (12th) 2014 Expected wins: 9.16 (ranked 12th, over achieved by 0.84 wins) Record in…
These four teams should be in contention for the finals, and they might even push for top four spots, but they are a class below the main contenders. Manly Sea Eagles 2014 record: 16-8 (2nd) 2014 Expected wins: 15.1 (ranked 4th, over achieved by 0.9 wins, fourth luckiest team) Record in games decided by six points or fewer: 6-2 2015…
In the last of my prediction series I look at the four teams I think will head the ladder at round 26. They all have potential chinks, but the head and the heart agree that they are the sides best built to withstand 24 rugged games in the NRL. Brisbane Broncos 2014 record: 12-12 (8th) 2014 Expected wins: 14.52 (ranked…
Ultimately, teams are always judged on how many wins and losses they had over the course of the season; that is the essence of sport. But how many wins and losses a team has one year often tells us very little about how many they will have the following year. The reality is that a record only tells us so…
Since 2008, the Cowboys have gone 14-34 in games decided by six points or less, which is a horrific record. No wonder Cowboys’ fans feel the NRL and the refs are against them; they are losing so many close games it magnifies any perceived slights. Could it be that as the Cowboys' playmaker Johnathan Thurston isn’t getting the job done…
The Sea Eagles failed to give the old guard the perfect send off when they fell in golden point to the Bulldogs in the Semi Final. Glenn Stewart, Anthony Watmough and Jason King had combined to play 714 games for the Sea Eagles and Northern Eagles, while being part of two premiership winning sides. But that experience is now gone.…
43 years of pain, court appearances, financial mismanagement and a hiatus from the competition was forgotten about as John Sutton held aloft the Provan-Summons trophy and now that they have added a Nines title the Rabbits can't stop winning. Finishing 3rd on the premiership table with 15 wins the biggest issue Souths had to deal with was which halves to…

Parramatta Eels 2015 Team Preview

With the stench of Ricky Stuart and his wooden spoons gone, Brad Arthur had what can be considered a successful season finishing with a 12 win, 12 loss, 10th position. Though it was largely on the back of inspirational fullback Jarryd Hayne, what should not be overlooked is that other recruits helped make significant improvements. Peats showed great potential at…
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