Crikey’s NRL Hot Form Chart
Origin 2008 is still alive. Which is nice, because it makes this week’s abbreviated round seem kind of worthwhile.
Hot Form sliders the Roosters kick things off tonight and, in Penrith, face a stern enough test to work out whether last week’s shellacking at the hands of Manly was an aberration or the beginnings of a form slump. For the admirable Panthers, back-to-back losses may see them slip outside of the top eight.
Canberra host a rep-weary Broncos in a match that could also shape the incredibly congested NRL top eight. A loss for Brisbane could conceivably put them in the bottom half of the ladder, but a Raiders’ defeat might see them three games adrift of a finals spot. In a season as tight as this one, that’s too far.
The Tigers and Eels face a similar scenario. The winner of their clash can still pressure for a top four spot, but the loser is unlikely to be in any kind of position to seriously threaten the big boys come year’s end. If Parramatta in particular are fair dinkum, about now would be a good time to show it.
And Cowboys fans, cock-a-hoop following the Maroons triumph, may just be heading for a double celebration. Despite being anchored at the bottom of Crikey’s Hot Form Chart, North Queensland are just about due at home to Newcastle.
And how about those crazy funsters in the Queensland police force? Displaying humour that hasn’t been seen in the capital since the late 80s, some of the Sunshine State’s finest clapped a pair of handcuffs on Cronulla and NSW five-eighth Greg Bird and made him sit in the back of a police car as a joke! Champagne comedy! Unfortunately Bird, perhaps grumpy after his less than stellar performance in the Origin game some hours earlier, wasn’t laughing. He and his teammates will have the opportunity to take out their frustrations this weekend on the Warriors.
New Zealand could not even handle the strife-torn Rabbits last week and, with Cronulla back at the pointy end of the Hot Form Chart, would appear to be heading toward something rather unpleasant on Saturday. They’ll probably lose and all.
|Form*||Team||Last week||NRL ladder position||Sequence|
*Form over the past five games
Crikey’s Hot Form Tips for Round 14 are:
- North Queensland
Last week: 6
Crikey’s AFL Hot Form Chart
Crikey’s Hot Form top eight looks a little like the AFL’s except in reverse. The surge of the Swans and Lions has come on the back of expected wins, but Collingwood at least have the scalp of Geelong hanging from its belt.
This week, Brisbane have the chance to impress the ne’er-say-wells by defeating one of the top four at the MCG. The Bulldogs will be no easy toss though, and with peroxide pin-up Jason Akermanis in sparkling form, the meeting with his old team has earned Crikey’s match of the round billing.
Collingwood and Sydney get it easier. The Pies play Carlton at — guess where? — the MCG and shouldn’t give Brett Ratten the opportunity to call Mick Malthouse a sore loser.
Sydney host the kings of junk-time St Kilda. By the time the Saints pile on a lazy half dozen in the final quarter, expect the Harbour side boys to have it done, dusted and dealt with. And who knows? If the Big Bad One slips back into the side well, records could be set.
A grand final rematch normally receives more fanfare than is greeting the Geelong-Port encounter, but with the Power travelling just a shade better than Australian basketball, the ho-humming isn’t so surprising.
The other big match is Richmond against Melbourne . . . nah, only joking, although how the Demons (and their supporters) respond to gentleman Jim’s oil-slick smooth transition to power will be of some interest.
What will be of a lot more interest, however, is how the Hawks perform against the Crows. It has been a long 14 years since brown and yellow reigned in Adelaide — at least on the football field — an anomaly this ultra-talented Hawthorn team should be able to rectify.
And, this weekend, the scene is set for a rare occurrence; something, in fact, that has yet to happen so far this year: both West Australian teams could win. Sure, it may not come to pass but if does, don’t say you weren’t warned.
|Form*||Team||Last week||AFL ladder position||Sequence|
*Form over the past five games
Crikey’s Hot Form Tips for round 12: