Round 22 NRL action saw thrillers and thrashings; grapples and gripes; and at the end of it all, powerful portents in Crikey’s NRL Hot Form Chart.

Could the Chart be telling us something? Will Crikey’s current Hot Form top 8 be playing finals football in September?

It just might happen. Wests Tigers and the injury-ravaged Broncos are under severe pressure from the two teams just outside the NRL top 8: Souths and the Roosters. If the form lines stay true, they could leapfrog into the finals, despite having to face each other in the last round.

The variable is the Tigers match against Cronulla this weekend. A victory would just about seal September action for Wests, leaving the Rabbits or Roosters to try and pinch eighth spot from a busted-up Broncos.

The Titans are the only other team with a realistic chance of upsetting the apple cart. This weekend they host the Roosters, whose fairy tale has a distinct ‘happily ever after’ look to it. By the end of the round, this column is tipping Freddie’s boys to be crowing in the NRL top 8.

Crikey’s Hot Form Chart is also expecting the Eels to drop out of the top 4 after round 23, giving the Warriors and Cowboys a toehold on the critical home ground advantage for finals.

Form over last 5 weeks

Team

Last week’s form rating

NRL ladder position

Sequence

1 Manly 1 2 W-W-W-W-W
2 Warriors 3 5 W-W-W-D-W
3 Roosters 4 10 W-W-W-D-W
4 Melbourne 2 1 W-W-L-W-W
5 Bulldogs 7 6 L-W-W-L-W
6 Rabbitohs 9 9 L-W-W-L-W
7 Parramatta 5 3 W-W-L-W-L
8 Cowboys 12 4 L-W-L-W-W
9 Dragons 6 13 L-W-L-W-L
10 Brisbane 8 7 W-L-W-L-L
11 Canberra 11 14 W-L-W-L-L
12 Penrith 13 16 W-L-L-W-L
13 Cronulla 16 12 L-L-L-L-W
14 Tigers 10 8 L-L-W-L-L
15 Titans 14 11 L-L-L-W-L
16 Newcastle 15 15 L-L-L-L-L

Columns indicate: Comparative form over the last 5 weeks; Position on form as of last week; Position on NRL ladder; Win/Loss sequence.

Crikey’s NRL Hot Form Tips for round 22 are:

  • Cowboys
  • Storm
  • Bulldogs
  • Sharks
  • Roosters
  • Warriors
  • Panthers
  • Sea Eagles

Last week: 6

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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
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