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29 Aug 2018 by Ash Wheldon

2018 NRL – South Sydney Rabbitohs vs Wests Tigers Preview

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AT A GLANCE

When?
Thursday 30th August, 10:50 (UK)

Where?
ANZ Stadium

What channel is it on?
UK – Sky Sports Arena
Australia – Nine Network, Foxtel, LIVE Pass

Where can I stream the match?
UK – Sky Sports subscribers can stream the match online via Sky Go
Australia – https://www.telstra.com.au/tv-movies-music/sports-offer

Are tickets still available?
http://premier.ticketek.com.au/shows/Show.aspx?sh=RBS2518

THE STATISTICS

THE LOWDOWN

RABBITOHS

Head Coach: Anthony Seibold

Starting 13: Johnston, Graham, Inglis, Gagai, Jennings, Walker, Reynolds, T. Burgess, Cook, G. Burgess, Sutton, Crichton, S. Burgess – Interchanges: Hunt, Murray, Clark, Britt – Reserves: Burns, Fuimaono, Tatola, McIlwrick

Unavailable: Adam Doueihi

  • South Sydney lost for the third straight game as they went down 24-12 to Canberra last week. The Rabbitohs couldn’t capitalise on a good start to the game having opened up a 0-12 lead with the Raiders scoring 24 unanswered points from the 30-minute mark.

  • Top scorer Robert Jennings is back for Souths, allowing them to select their first-choice three-quarter line since the start of July. Dean Britt has been named on the bench and could make his first appearance of the season in place of Tevita Tatola.

  • The Rabbitohs will be hoping for a confidence-boosting win ahead of the play-offs and will be looking to score some points in the process. Souths are the second highest scorers in the NRL this season with an average of 23.1 points scored per game.

TIGERS

Head Coach: Ivan Cleary

Starting 13: Mbye, Nofoaluma, Marsters, Fonua, Naiqama, Marshall, Brooks, Eisenhuth, Farah, Matulino, Lawrence, Chee Kam, Taylor – Interchanges: Twal, Sue, Rochow, Aloiai – Reserves: Liddle, Garner, Gamble, Watene-Zelezniak

Unavailable: Josh Reynolds, Corey Thompson, Russell Packer

  • Wests Tigers finally had their gusty bid for a play-off spot ended last week as both New Zealand Warriors and Brisbane Broncos won their respective games. This was after Wests had put the pressure on after they held off a late fightback from Manly as they claimed a 22-20 win.

  • Russell Packer will miss the final game of the season for the Tigers with a knee injury. He is replaced by the returning Elijah Taylor with Matt Eisenhuth moving to prop to allow Taylor to take his position at lock.

  • When the Tigers review their season and assess why they missed out on the play-offs, one element that will stand out is their inability to score points consistently. Wests have scored an average of just 16 points per game this season, the second lowest in the NRL.

THE PREDICTION

Wests Tigers will be wondering what could have been after it was mathematically confirmed that they would not be involved in the play-offs this season. The Tigers had a strong start to the season and turned over several top teams along the way but consistency and scoring points was an issue for them. They now head to ANZ to face South Sydney who will be looking to end the season on a high after three back-to-back defeats. The Rabbitohs currently occupy third place and know a win will seal their top 4 place although a defeat could cost them a spot. With so much on the line for the Rabbitohs and so little for the Tigers, it could work in Wests’ favour. However, South Sydney can refocus this week and with their first-choice XIII in tow, they can claim the win to seal their top 4 spot here.

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