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Thursday 06 August 11:50

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St George Illawarra Dragons vs Sydney Roosters Live Stream

NRL ROUND 13

ST GEORGE ILLAWARRA DRAGONS VS SYDNEY ROOSTERS

THURSDAY AUGUST 6, 7.50 PM, WIN STADIUM, WOLLONGONG

The Dragons will need to put their inconsistent form of 2020 to bed and play the game they are capable of if they are to stand a chance against the under-fire Roosters team.  The Roosters are doing okay in the Premiership but are understandably frustrated with their form, that continues to see them struggle to beat ordinary teams, as has been the case in the last two matches against Gold Coast and New Zealand.  Unquestionably, it is do or die here and now for the Dragons who are languishing in 11th at 4-8, in a 20-game season, while the Chooks need to win to maintain their 4th position, which is clearly vital if they want a 3rd straight title.  Breezy, cool conditions ought to ensure a high quality of Rugby League is played, as we head to the far south of Wollongong, for this traditional blockbuster.

Mary has wielded the axe on under-performing half Corey Norman who is out of the Dragons line-up, with youngster Clune assuming the 7 jersey and Half Back role, after recovering from concussion.  Merrin too returns from a head-knock and replaces Jacob Host on the bench, while Aitken will need to prove he has overcome a hamstring niggle, with probably Saab as the ring-in should he fail.  Tupouniua moved back to his more natural position of Back Row for the Roosters, thanks to the return of star veteran Centre Josh Morris.  Daniel Fifita misses out on selection, as Nat Butcher takes his bench role, while Robinson has also made a big halves change with Flanagan dropped in favour of young Lam.  Former Dragon Half, Drew Hutchison will take a place on the Roosters bench for just his 9th NRL game, after proving himself in England for the 2018 season and picking up a Roosters contract last season.

Back in June these teams met, with the Dragons causing Sydney some problems for about an hour, before the Roosters moved clear, winning 26-12, thanks to the 2nd and 3rd tries for Brett Morris on the night.  The Tricolours also won the two 2019 meetings, by 10 and 22 respectively; overall though since the Dragons/Steelers merger it has been tight with St George trailing 21-20 and 1 draw.  The Roosters are $1.25 favourites, while the Dragons are little chance according to bookies at $4.00, with a near 2-converted tries margin predicted.  Expect a strong reaction from the player group of the Roosters players, to the criticism that is being fairly labelled upon them, and look for a strong showing from the experienced heads such as Morris, Keary and Friend.

PREDICTION: Roosters by around 14.

BETTING TIP: $2.90 for the 1-12 margin is nice odds, if you think the Roosters mediocre victories theme is set to continue.