The second week of the NRL Finals really showed who the best and most in-form teams in the competition are, by two games and a huge margin.
The Eels and Rabbitohs have both had impressive dominating victories and will take on the Cowboys and Panthers in the Pre-Finals this weekend.
Mitchell Moses from Eels Kick. Image: Mark Kolbe/Getty Images
Parramatta Eels vs. Canberra Raiders
Parramatta had some fire in her stomach after a big loss to the Panthers and seemed to take all her anger out on the Raiders by scoring the first four tries of the game.
They were amazing and looked like they were going to win the whole game.
The Raiders seemed tired after a grueling match the week before: for a team usually known for their great starts, they were behind from the start.
The Eels had players across the board, all of whom played well with an insane six different try scorers and stuck defensively, leaving Canberra with just four points for the game.
Mitch Moses was amazing again for the Eels with five conversions, a try and try assist, he did it all.
Eels fans had their hearts in their mouths when he went to a HIA, but he was fine and returned to the field.
Parramatta handed Canberra their biggest Finals defeat ever by a margin of 36 points and after such a big win the Eels’ confidence in their ability to go all the way will be sky high.
The Rabbitohs’ Taane Milne celebrates a try. Image: Brendon Thorne/Getty Images
Cronulla Sharks vs. South Sydney Rabbitohs
Similar to Friday night’s semifinals, the Rabbitohs pulled off a big win over the Sharks and continued their amazing form by marching into a fifth straight Preliminary Round.
Many predicted this would be a close encounter, but a quick start from Souths put Cronulla behind the whole game.
Mark Nicholls was able to score within the first two minutes of the game and the Rabbitohs scored the game’s first three tries.
A good team will always beat a team that relies on its stars, and the Rabbitohs proved just that, having six different try-scorers and sharing the load on offense and defense.
Britain’s Nikora played well at both ends of the field and put the Sharks back in play with a try early in the first half.
Although Cronulla looked like Cronulla was slowly creeping back into the game each time, the Rabbitohs had an answer and quickly scored a try or two themselves, putting the home fans at ease.
Latrell Mitchell was helpful with five of five conversions from the point to maintain their solid lead.
The Rabbitohs ended up easy winners with 26 points, but that win turned sour when star winger Alex Johnston left the game with a hip flexor problem. Souths fans will be praying he’s okay for the provisional final as they’ll need him in attack.
NRL Premiership winner
The Panthers are still the clear favorites for the Premiership and they should be. With such a dominant win over the Eels in week one, Penrith will be confident they can go all the way with their talent and style of play.
While it’s still tough to go all the way, the Rabbitohs are now the big movers down to second favorite. With plenty of star power like Latrell Mitchell, could they continue their great form and win a Premier League from seventh place?
The Cowboys are well rested after the week off and their ability to stay in games and use their fitness and skill late to win games could still help them win the Premier League.
While the Eels still have a chance, a big win over the weekend will give them confidence, but they will find it much more difficult this weekend against a higher quality opponent.
Penrith Panther – $1.80
South Sydney Rabbitohs – $5.50
Cowboys from North Queensland – $6.00
Parramatta eels – $6.00
(All odds as of 19th September – best odds on Bet365’s Premiership market)
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