3 days ago
Round 14 is upon us and the after effects of Origin II will play a large part in determining the winners for this round. The weather will also be a factor for the matches played in Sydney as we look to be in for a good soaking again this weekend and that will have an effect on many games in terms of quality.
Manly host Souths tomorrow night and although Manly have a few players backing up from Origin, they should be too strong for a Souths side still trying to find a decent halves pairing that will put the opposition in two minds when they are attacking. Daivd Peachy is also a late withdrawal due to a death in the family and his presence at the back will be sorely missed. Souths will be competitive but at the end of the day, Manly will be prevail at home but by less than twelve points.
The other Friday night match is between two of the supposed competition heavyweights in the Broncos and Bulldogs. The match will be played at a waterlogged Telstra Stadium and you would have to think the wet condition will favour the Dogs more than the Broncos. There are also injury concerns over several Broncos players, including Darren Lockyer, Brent Tate and Justin Hodges. No word on any changes to the Dogs lineup but Willie Mason will be under a cloud as he has only played one game in the past three weeks and still looks a little underdone. The Dogs without Mason have no bite and Andrew Ryan will struggle to get through eighty minutes after his herculian effort in Origin II. Still, I think the Dogs may be a little fresher than the Broncos and on the back of that and the wet weather, I