Written By Inruin
Dr Jekyl and Mr Hyde has been used to describe the Warriors season, games, 10 minute periods and even some of their sets of six so far this year. Unfortunately, it has been impossible to predict which one will turn up and when. You can count on them both showing up this Friday.
It can been revealed exclusively on NZWF that an administration oversight has meant that the Broncos have only booked Suncorp for Friday nights. Let’s hope that the combination of Black Friday, and Jekyl and Hyde make the Broncos wish they had not let Tajhay organise their home games.
For the first time this season the Warriors have taken the two competition points for three consecutive weeks. With Hurrellcane on fire, we have beaten the Cowboys and the Titans by 13+, comfortably dispatched the bye and moved into the top 8 on points differential. At times during these games we have looked unbeatable, well structured and in control. At other times we have looked like NZWF members having a throw around in the park.
The Broncos come off the bye firmly in the top 8 but, since winning six games in their opening 7 rounds, they have looked vulnerable. This has coincided with the Origin period and I would expect them to get back to their best in the next few rounds.
The Broncos get their origin players back refreshed from the bye and they will be on a high after winning their 7th straight origin series. In the forwards Ben Hannant is their version of Ben Matulino and gets them great yardage and plays good minutes. Corey Parker plays 80 minutes and has shown how dangerous he is with his offloads and running game, but also racks up the tackles. Justin Hodges had a relatively quiet origin series by his standards, but his dummy half runs and general attacking game will keep our defensive line busy.
Our forward pack, as it has been most of the season, was very good last week. However, with Hurrell and possibly Locke out this week it will fall to the creativity of Maloney, Shaun Johnson and Mateo to get us our points. For me, those three are the ones to watch. The Beast is back! New and Improved! How good will he be now he can run and see?
These teams last meet in round 9 at Mt Smart and the Warriors got the 2 points with a 30–20 win. Both teams have strong forward packs and quality halves (though I’m not sold on Corey Norman). This game will be decided in the centre/wing/fullback positions – both on attack and in defence. Omar is named to cover Locke, if he is passed fit Omar will drop off the bench.
I desperately want to say Warriors by 8……But the Broncos won’t give us the same level of possession the Titans and Cowboys gave us and with 4 of their last 5 games of the season being really tough ones, they will be keen to bank points here.
Reality check for Bluey and The Warriors.
Score 34 – 16*
*prediction based on a dry track. If wet it will be a little closer, but Broncos still to get the points.