NRL Finals Week 1 tips, best bets, predictions and previews.
After 20 rounds of an abbreviated season, the finals are finally here and we’ve got some blockbuster showdowns to kick off all the action, with eight teams to be cut to six over the weekend – read on below as we preview every NRL Finals Week 1 game, along with providing our best bets and tips.
NRL Finals Week 1 Tips
NOTE: We will link all NRL Finals Week 1 tips and previews to this article once published throughout the week.
Penrith Panthers vs Sydney Roosters NRL Finals Week 1 Tips
- Friday October 2 | 7.50pm AEST | Panthers Stadium
Penrith put together one of the most dominant regular seasons in recent memory and bring a 15-match winning streak into this clash with the Roosters, who suffered one of their most embarrassing defeats of all time last week, leaking 60 points against Souths. Can the two-time reigning premiers pick themselves up in time for the minor premiers?
Canberra Raiders vs Cronulla Sharks NRL Finals Week 1 Tips
- Saturday October 3 | 5.30pm AEST | GIO Stadium
These two teams square off for the second time in a week after a second-string Canberra outfit beat Cronulla 38-28 in Round 20. With the Raiders welcoming back their big guns and the Sharks missing star halfback Shaun Johnson, it’s tough to see a different outcome as the Green Machine aim to plot their route back to the Grand Final.
Melbourne Storm vs Parramatta Eels
- Saturday October 3 | 7.50pm AEST | Suncorp Stadium
Enormous test for the Eels, who have slumped badly over the last two months and look a far cry from the side that started the season in blistering fashion. Melbourne and Craig Bellamy are finals specialists and are on a huge winning streak in Queensland – the Eels need to find their best football quickly if they are to make a contest of this.
South Sydney Rabbitohs vs Newcastle Knights
- Sunday October 4 | 4.00pm AEDT | ANZ Stadium
South Sydney sky-rocketed into premiership contention with their swashbuckling 60-8 demolition of the Roosters last week, while the Knights did the exact opposite, leaking 36 points to the Titans. Both teams have been very inconsistent throughout the season, but Souths are clearly the team to beat here.