Scoring could be at a premium between Brisbane Broncos and Melbourne Storm
June 28, 2016
Recommended bet: Under 39.5 points @ 10/11 (1.91) with bet365
The Friday night heavyweight clash between Brisbane Broncos and Melbourne Storm at the Suncorp Stadium is the match of Round 17 between two of the favourites for the NRL Telstra Premiership.
The Origin series has certainly had a negative impact on the form of Brisbane Broncos, having lost four of their last five matches. Broncos’ team news sees Andrew McCullough and Alex Glenn are back for Broncos, while Lachlan Maranta earns a recall. Greg Eden, Tom Opacic and Herman Ese’ese are all out as a result.
In contrast to Broncos, Storm are absolutely flying at present, having won eight of their last nine matches to climb to within a couple of points of table-topping Cronulla Sutherland Sharks.
Storm should welcome back Cameron Munster and Blake Green after a couple of weeks on the sidelines, which should in turn enable Tohu Harris to return to the second row. Melbourne are without Nelson Asofa-Solomona, so Matt White comes in as his replacement.
It’s certainly tempting to opt for Storm here, whether on the match price or with a small handicap in their favour, given their excellent form of late. They have also been very much the dominant team in the head-to-head results with Broncos in recent years, winning 23 of the last 28 clashes in the Premiership.
That run includes five consecutive wins for the Storm at the Suncorp Stadium and nine of the last 10. In six meetings in the Finals series, Melbourne has also been victorious on five occasions, albeit Brisbane Broncos did claim the big one in winning the Grand Final clash in 2006. The Broncos can also boast a fine home record this term, so going against them is a risk.
A better angle might be to look at total points. The last five meetings between these two teams have all had a total of less than 38 points. Indeed Broncos have only scored above 18-points once in their last nine matches against Storm.
Taking into account that Storm have the best defensive record in the Premiership this season and that this looks set to be a tight match anyway, backing a total of under 39.5 points could be the way to go.