NRL State Of Origin 17 Game 2 Preview

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NRL State Of Origin 17 Game 2 Preview

MrG provides NRL Tips Previews Sports Betting content each week including our State Of Origin preview for Reading The Play NRL subscribers.

NRL Tips Previews Sports Betting


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NRL Tips Origin 2017 – Game 2


Game 2 Recommended Bet Options

NSW 1-12 $2.70 Unibet

Total Points Under 32.5 $1.90 Tabsportsbet

Boyd Cordner Man Of The Match $9 Sportsbet

The above bets are the favoured bet types MrG has recommended and bet for this game.


Game Preview

NSW vs QLD

Sydney

Stats

Queensland holds a 58-49 all time advantage over New South Wales, while there have been 2 draws. Since the 3 game Series was introduced, the Maroons have won 20 Series to the Blues 13, with 2 drawn Series in 1999 and 2002. The Maroons have won 10 of the last 11 series and have won the last two series.
There have been 25 matches played at Stadium Australia Homebush, with NSW holding a 16-8-1 all time advantage. NSW have won 5 of the last 8 at Homebush with the last 5 games at the ground all being decided by six points or less.

QLD have rained in the changes with 7 in total, Thurston and Slater welcomed back plus they have named 4 new debutants in Valentine Holmes, Coen Hess, Tim Glasby and Jarrod Wallace while Gavin Cooper returns to play his second Origin game.

Last 10 games at Homebush spilt 5 wins each (5-5) with av pts total of 26.2

Last 3 x Game 2’s at Homebush all won by NSW (6-4, 16-12, 18-8)

Last 8 games at Homebush have all resulted in winning margins of 1-12

Last 8 games at Homebush neither team has scored more than 20 pts

History is certainly on the side of NSW here with the last 4 road teams to win the series opener on away turf then able to securing the series in the second game when winning back on home turf.

Homebush on Origin night normally produces low scoring tight games with the late start and game / ground conditions normally damp and slippery. The last 8 games at this ground have all tallied 32 or less points. None of the last five matches where the series was still alive into the Homebush game have topped 22 pts, and 2 of the last 4 games that this ground have totaled just 10 points.

Preview

Game 1 went almost according to script with NSW impressive in dominating and playing smart back through the middle, this forward domination then rewarded as it so often can be through the last 20 minutes when they skipped away to a clear and comfortable 28-4 win.

In the end NSW were the dominant team and deserved such a wide margin, but as the quality of Origin is QLD were not that far away into half time with the game looking somewhat in the balance at 6-4 and play on NSW’s try line. But, as suggested prior to Game 1 Walter’s and the QLD brain’s trust had in my opinion played the loyalty card for one game too long and it was here (last 10 minutes into half time) and then the back half of the game that they were duly punished. With Matt Scott missing, they devoid of muscle and grunt in the middle and their preparedness to pick and play players well out of form and at the wrong end of their rep career they were exposed.

QLD have now reacted with 7 team changes, and most notably multiple positional changes. What stood out like a sore thumb prior to game one has now seen a complete about face, and while I like and respect the changes to the forward line up (which should have already occurred) those made across their backline for mine carry some risk. Wallace and Glasby were musts, they need some guys who are yardage men, can play decent minutes and importantly can defend in the middle third (not makeshift options). Now, are Wallace and Glasby in the same class and ilk as a Matt Scott or Steve Price or a Petro Civoniceva and can they get the same sort of job done, no, but right now QLD have no other option and the strengths of these two guys is that they do work, they can get a job done, and should they aim up it then provides Smith and Co room and time to offer their polish.

Thurston and Slater were obvious recalls. Individually the other changes look ok, although they do lose big meters with the absence of Oates, but the key positional changes mean that of the QLD back 6 only 1 of them (Gagai) played in the same position in Game 1. This swap and change has to carry some risk, especially with key players playing at this level out of their normal position, the likes of Boyd to centre, Holmes to play left wing (all his footy has been right wing) and the change around of the left and right combinations (including the back rowers). It’s a much much better team than Game 1, but this is where they should have started not now be under the pump off a bad loss into an away game and series decider.

The return of the Smith, Cronk, Thurston and Slater combination is huge. Individually stand out champions, together they know each others game and so often combine to produce just magic. If there was a 24 pt difference between these two sides in Game 1 then getting the old band back together is at least a 16 point swing in strengthening back up what QLD will bring to offer here.
NSW have the luxury of retaining the same team and no key injuries, and get to play on their home track with what they can make very suitable conditions and game style.

I still think NSW hold all the aces, it’s now a matter of if they hold their heads and if and how they play them.

– The last 4 road teams to win the series opener on away turf has then been able to secure a series win when then playing the second game at home. Add to this NSW have held a healthy long term advantage at this ground (64%), winning 16 of the 25 games.

– Game style – the wet damp conditions of Homebush lends itself to a lower risk game played predominately through the middle 30% to 40% of the park. QLD will have to take higher risk and make far more ball movement.

– In Fifita, Klemmer and Woods and their additional middle forward NSW should again hold the upper hand through the middle. I don’t expect that a lot needs to change, play the first 15 minutes with a mixture of middle and edge runners, working over and moving QLD around, then look to play back through the middle as they tire. Then just keep coming back through the middle with your big men to set things up (note multiple NSW tries in Game 1 came from players supporting the big men and middle yardage).

For QLD I’d expect it will be a combination of similar yet different tactics, with ball play and multiple passes and off loads the key. There’ll also look to play slightly wide of the ruck, they’ll look to play wider when every possible, they’ll look to run around the bigger NSW forwards and then later open them up, and the #9, 7, 6 and 1 have a habit of making things happen!

So where does that all leave us? For mine it’s NSW’s to lose. They still hold a significant advantage through the middle for mine, size, grunt and yardage, and the game conditions and track suit. QLD have a much stronger line up, they’ll also bring I expect much more desperation in defence, and so as the script for this ground goes I again expect we are in for a tight, scrappy low scoring game.

The expected game style, desperation and all the key stats point to the under total points as the right play. The last 8 games at this ground have all tallied 32 or less points; none of the last five matches where the series was still alive into the Homebush game have topped 22 pts, and 2 of the last 4 games that this ground have totaled just 10 points.

NSW 14-12


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Key Contest Stats

Kind thanks to Mark Hull a good friend and keen NRL follower who complies a weekly list of key stats and insights for each game. You can also follow Mark on Twitter here @FootyAssist


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Having coached at a senior level for 16 years including 3 years on the coaching staff of an NRL club Mr G is an avid student of the game. He’s coached sides to win titles at a senior level, run the football arm of a successful district club, managed professional players and worked in various development roles, so it’s fair to say the game of Rugby League is certainly in his blood and supports an experienced and unique offering.

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