The Wolf’s Sporting Guide

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The Wolf’s Sporting Guide – July 22

Wolf’s Best

NRL: Roosters +11.5 @ $1.91 (v Storm) – Sat 7:30pm
Melbourne’s charge to a Top 2 finish sees them face a Sydney Roosters team that is struggling to breakthrough of late but has certainly been playing better Rugby League. Low-scoring matches have been typical with 5 of the last 6 failing to break 38 points and that makes the line is this one way too big. Since 2013 the Storm are 7-15 ATS when starting as a double digit favourite and with the Roosters getting off to quick starts as of late they are likely to put the Storm under pressure early. Melbourne have been outstanding all year but laying a big start against the Roosters the bet is certainly the visitors. The Storm are typically terrible bets laying a big start at home and double digits here is just way too much.  With road outsiders off a double digit loss covering at a great clip, particularly on a quick backup, a Sydney Roosters team with a near full-strength side should make the nut.

Code Bets

AFL: Adelaide +6.5 @ $1.91 (v Geelong) – Sat 4:35pm
Geelong have fallen away after a string of impressive wins against top eight sides, falling to Geelong pre-bye, losing to Sydney post-bye, before struggling to put away the Dockers last week. Adelaide have now won eight in a row, at an average winning margin of 45 points with the smallest victory being by 22 points. Bigger scalps have included GWS, West Coast and North, while they comfortably handled an in-form Collingwood last week. The Crows are 11-5 ATS this season and would be starting double digit favourites at a neutral venue. The Cats forward line hasn’t been functioning as well as it did earlier in the season and it will ultimately cost them in this one. Take Adelaide at the line and back them outright.

NRL: Sharks -24.5 @ $1.91 (v Knights) – Sun 2:00pm
It is top against bottom as a Sharks team riding a 14-game win streak host a Newcastle team with just a single win to their name this year. The Sharks have won the last three since the start of 2015, including a 22-6 victory at the last meeting at Shark Park while of the last four matches have topped 49 points. Cronulla annihilated Newcastle when the teams met earlier in the season 62-0 and we could be looking at something similar in this. The Sharks are riding high after 14 straight wins and are playing with such attacking flair it is hard to envisage Newcastle being able to hold them. Favourites off a double digit win cover at a strong clip while double digit outsiders off a strong defensive effort are always overrated. The Sharks in a canter.

Super Rugby: Hurricanes -13.5 @ $1.90 (v Sharks)
After storming to the top of the Super Rugby standings in a crazy final round, the Hurricanes secured what should be a straightforward home assignment against the eighth-placed Sharks in the first week of the finals. The Hurricanes finished the regular season in blistering form, scoring a tough 27-18 win over the Waratahs in Sydney and a crushing five-tries-to-one defeat of the Crusaders in Christchurch. The Hurricanes flew under the radar for much of the season, but they are peaking at the right time. Their scrum and lineout struggled against the Crusaders and that will be a concern against the physical Sharks, but their attacking thrust right across the park shapes as being too much for the visitors to contain, despite their impressive defensive record in 2016. The Sharks’ limp attack has been their biggest bugbear, and should ensure this is the most one-sided match of the opening weekend of the finals.

Wolf’s Bolter

AFL: Bombers 40+ @ $3.75 (v Lions) – Sun 1:10pm
Essendon have now lost 15 in a row, but three of their last four games have seen them on the verge of another win, when pushing GWS, St Kilda and Richmond. They were in winning positions late in each of those games. How badly are Brisbane going when a team that hasn’t won since Round 2, and has won only two of its last 24 matches, is $1.50 favourite against them? Essendon deserve their favouritism over the fact that the game is at their home, and they have displayed an honesty in more of their losses than Brisbane have in theirs. The weight of expectation can weigh heavily on a poor side, but there is a sense that the Bombers have set themselves for this one a long way out. If both sides bring their recent form, then this should only go one way. The Dons will grab an emphatic win and the margin could be more than 50!

Wolf’s Multi 

Combined Odds $7.50
NRL: Under 43.5 points (Titans v Eeld) | AFL: Western Bulldogs (v Saints)  | Super Rugby: Crusaders WIN (v Lions)
It’s a footy frenzy this weekend and The Wolf is going across the NRL, AFL and Super Rugby.

Feature Match Previews

AFL: Power v Giants – Sun 4:40pm
Port are proving a hard team to catch, and are winning and losing both at home and on the road. Adelaide Oval provides no comfort here, especially given GWS have travelled well this year. Both teams are capable of playing burst football and kicking quick goals through a midfield blitzkrieg, but we’ve seen it more from GWS, who have also sustained it for longer. Both sides hit the game with confidence after strong wins last week, and while both can win the ball on the inside, the Giants have more speed and run on the outside, which gives them the advantage. A fascinating contest awaits if both sides are mentally switched on, but predicting if one of them will be off is a fool’s game. GWS are flying and The Wolf will be getting behind them.