Okay, MyBookie rugby betting enthusiasts, if you’re fired up about the 2020 NRL Telestra Premiership season as it moves into its final three weeks of action, then you should know the coming week of action features some huge matchups with postseason implications. The league-leading Penrith Panthers will be looking to hold off the desperate Melbourne Storm and Parramatta Eels over the final three weeks to finish the regular season in first place. Penrith, hosts Parramatta on Friday in a huge matchup of top three teams. 

The two-time defending champion Sydney Roosters can’t finish in first place, but they’ll be looking to make a potential leap to second before the end of the regular season. The Wests Tigers, Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks, South Sydney Rabbitohs, New Zealand Warriors and Newcastle Knights are in an all-out brawl to reach or stay inside the top eight to reach the postseason. Now, let’s find out where the best rugby betting value lies this coming week, along with their NRL odds. 

NRL Round 18 Events Preview – Highlights, Odds and Picks (Sept. 10 – 13)

Wests Tigers (7-0-10) vs South Sydney Rabbitohs (10-0-7)

The Wests Tigers are in ninth place in the standings with 14 points. The Tigers have scored 370 points, but allowed 401 points defensively while going 3-5 at home this season. The Tigers come into this affair off a hard-fought 34-32 home win over the Manly Sea Eagles on Saturday.  

The Rabbitohs are in seventh place in the standings with 20 points. South Sydney has scored 419 points while allowing 294 points defensively. The Rabbitohs have gone an uninspiring 4-5 on the road this season and had their four-game winning streak snapped in their 22-16 home loss against Melbourne on Friday.

Prediction

South Sydney has won three of five against the Tigers including an 18-10 home win a year ago. More importantly, they are the better team at both eds of the field and will be facing a Tigers team that has allowed more points this season than they’ve scored. The Rabbitohs win and narrowly cover the chalk as a 7.5-point home favorite.

Pick: South Sydney +7½ 

Penrith Panthers (15-1-1) vs Parramatta Eels (13-0-4)

The Panthers are sitting atop the Telestra Premiership standings with 31 points. Penrith has scored 443 points while limiting the opposition to just 224 points, good for second in both scoring categories. The Panthers have gone an unblemished 8-0 at home this season and come into this matchup riding a stupendous 12-game winning streak that includes a 25-12 road win over lowly Brisbane on Thursday. 

The Eels are sitting in third place in the NRL standings with 26 points. Parramatta has scored 336 points while allowing 232 points defensively. The Eels have gone 6-2 on the road this season and come into this affair fresh off a narrow, 24-18 road win over New Zealand on Sunday. 

Prediction

While these two rivals have alternated wins and losses over their last four meetings, this season, Penrith has been virtually unbeatable and they’ll be highly focused as they look to finish in first place. The Panthers have scored over 100 more points this season that the Eels and that will be the difference in this meeting, not to mention I can’t get past Parammatta’s pitiful 38-0 shutout loss against South Sydney two weeks ago. The Panthers win and cover the chalk by shutting down Parramatta’s offense. 

Pick: Penrith -7½ 

Sydney Roosters (12-0-5) vs Newcastle Knights (10-1-6) 

The Roosters are in fourth place in the standings with 24 points. Sydney has scored a league-leading 468 points while allowing 232 points defensively. The Roosters have gone a modest 5-3 at home this season and come into this matchup riding a three-game winning streak that includes an 18-6 road win over Canberra on Saturday. 

The Knights are in sixth place in the standings with 21 points. Newcastle has scored 361 points while allowing 278 points defensively. The Knights have gone 6-3 on the road this season and come into this affair having gone 4-1 in their last five while beating the Sharks 38-10 at home on Friday. 

Prediction

While Sydney is playing at home and favored to get the win, I fully believe the 19.5-point spread is way too high for the Roosters to cover despite the fact that they beat the Knights 48-10 at home a year ago. Newcastle is playing very well right now and should easily cover the chalk in this one, though they certainly won’t get the outright upset victory.

Pick: Newcastle +19 ½ 

Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks (9-0-8) vs New Zealand Warriors (7-0-10)

The Sharks are in eight place in the standings with 18 points. Cronulla has scored 412 points while allowing 394 points defensively. The Sharks have gone 4-4 at home this season, but come into this matchup having lost two of their last three including an embarrassing 38-10 road loss against the Knights on Friday. 

The Warriors are in 10th place in the standings with 14 points. New Zealand has been limited to 275 points while allowing 382 points defensively. The Warriors have gone 3-5 on the road this season , but come into this matchup fresh off a narrow 24-18 home loss against Parramatta on Sunday. 

Prediction

Cronulla has won two straight and four of the last five meetings in this rivalry including an emphatic 46-10 road win last season. The Sharks are statistically better at both ends of the field and need this win in the worst way if they want to either hold on to the eighth and final spot in the race for the postseason or move up the ladder. Cronulla wins a thriller to narrowly cover the spread. 

Pick: Cronulla -4½


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