New Zealand Warriors v Wests Tigers
Sunday, August 28, 2pm (AEST), Mt Smart Stadium, Auckland
|Best Bet: Over 44.5 ($1.90)
Other: Over 58.5 ($5.00)
Shaun Johnson First Try ($17.00)
It is all over for the loser of the Warriors-Tigers clash on Sunday with both teams needing to win both remaining games to be any hope of finals football in 2016.
Tuimoala Lolohea has been recalled for the Warriors while Solomone Kata also returns from injury with Ken Maumalo and Matt Allwood out. The Wests Tigers are unchanged with Michael Chee-Kam travelling as 18th man.
The Warriors and the Tigers have played 26 times with each winning 13. The Tigers have won their last two including a shock 34-26 win at Campbelltown in Round 1. The Warriors hold a 6-4 all-time edge at Mt Smart, winning the last battle at the ground 32-22. These teams have a long history of high-scoring matches with the last four topping 54 points and 11 of 14 topping 42 points. Warriors Blake Ayshford and Bodene Thompson are former Tigers while Tiger Elijah Taylor is a former New Zealand player. David Nofoaluma has scored four tries in four games against the Warriors while Shaun Johnson has six tries in seven games against the Tigers.
New Zealand sit 9th with a 10-12 record and a -54 differential. They have dropped their last two by margins of 19 and 28 and have just two wins in their last six. Since Round 11, the Warriors rank 7th in attack and 10th in defence. The Tigers also have a 10-12 record but sit behind the Warriors on a -78 differential. They have dropped their last two and lost to Penrith by 30 last week in their first match without James Tedesco since suffering a broken jaw. Since Round 11, the Tigers rank 6th in attack and 8th in defence.
David Fusitua v David Nofoaluma. Both have played precious little football at fullback but both have been handed a huge responsibility this weekend. Fusitua is definitely more a centre but Andrew McFadden persists with him there. Nofoaluma has played no fullback in first grade but after Jordan Rankin’s stinker Jason Taylor had little choice but to make the switch.
Stats That Matter
New Zealand are 10-12 ATS with a 12-10 over record while the Wests Tigers are 11-11 ATS with an 11-11 total record. The Warriors have gone under in 6 of their last 8 while the Tigers have gone under in 4 of their last 5. Since 2011 over the last seven rounds of the year, the over hits in 56% of day matches (8-5 under this season). The Warriors are 9-12 ATS with a 13-8 over record when favoured by more than a converted try at Mt Smart since 2013 while they are 5-7 ATS and 9-3 over when favoured at the ground by more than 8.5. Home favourites of more than a converted try off single digits are 15-12 ATS. The Tigers have covered just 34% of road games since 2013 with the over saluting in 60% of matches. Getting 8 or more start the Tigers are 6-14 ATS on the road with a 13-7 over record. On the road getting 8 points off a double digit loss, they are 3-8 ATS with an 8-3 over record. The Warriors are 7-4 ATS under Gerard Sutton since 2013 while the Tigers are 2-6 ATS. Home teams cover 59% under Sutton.
New Zealand are 5-1 when leading at halftime. The Tigers are 0-8 when trailing.
The Warriors can’t be trusted laying a big start but the Tigers look done and dusted without James Tedesco at the back. There is a great bet in the match though with the over a definite play. The last four between these two have topped 54, the fullback situation at both teams has made both defences a mess and these teams like to throw the ball around against each other.
How It’s Shaping Up
New Zealand by 12
Over 44.5 ($1.90)
Over 58.5 ($5.00)
Best First/Last Tryscorer
Shaun Johnson First Try ($17.00)
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