Round 21 in the NRL gets underway with an old rivalry that is suddenly relevant again. The Sydney Roosters (8th) welcome the Brisbane Broncos (5th) to the SCG, starting at 7:20pm. While the Roosters have slid a little, it’s the Broncos improvement that gives this game significant interest. Both teams have lots to play for with top 8 and top 4 spots on the line respectively.

Draftstars has a $20,000 contest with $2184 to first place. There are also several other contests including the Mini, Micro, and the High Roller. 

Team News

There are two changes for the Roosters, with forwards Lindsay Collins (injury) and Egan Butcher (suspension) out. Matt Lodge is promoted to start at prop, with Ben Thomas and Terrell May joining the bench.

The Broncos have three changes. The headlines are the return of Selwyn Cobbo for Delouise Hoeter, and the suspension of Pat Carrigan which sees Kobe Hetherington promoted to start at lock. Rhys Kennedy comes onto the bench, and Jake Turpin replaces Cory Paix as the bench utility.

Betting Odds

Roosters $1.60 v Broncos $2.35 - Bet now at Ladbrokes!


The Broncos losing Carrigan is pretty significant for this game. Without that I’d have them very close despite being on the road, but it will be that much harder without his ample influence in the middle of the field. The Roosters losses are also less than ideal, but not quite as crucial and more easily covered by the incoming players. In other words, the odds seem pretty spot on, and Roosters backs could have a slight edge over their Broncos counterparts.


Love It - Victor Radley $12,590

There are a number of interesting FWDs on this slate, but Radley stands out as the clear value play. His price has dropped thanks to another injury impacted season, and a steady build up in minutes upon his return. He’s strung together 4 games now, and I think he’s back to the 60 minutes and 45 points in the lock role. Helping that this week is the slightly weakened Roosters forward stocks, where a couple of his fellow middle forwards have left a workload hole to be filled. With some low minute options on the bench, I feel better about Radleys chances of getting busy for long periods. Fellow Roosters Butcher and Lodge look almost as good for similar reasons.


Love It - Daniel Tupou $10,670

I could pick anyone from the Roosters back 3 for this spot, but I’ll single out Tupou as the cheapest and likely lowest selected. That’s because he’s only averaged 31 in his last 6, compared to a number in the high 30s before then. He’s clearly a 35+ point guy, and is a good chance to get things moving in that direction again in this game. Suaalii and Tedesco both have plenty of merit at prices that also represent solid value for their respective ceilings.


Love It - Adam Reynolds $22,350

If there’s one reason that the Broncos can win this game, It’s Reynolds. Like many of the best halfbacks, his fantasy core doesn’t really rely on his team winning. He has massive base stats from his kick metres and defensive involvement this season, and can rival fellow premium picks Tedesco and Haas for value on this slate. The HH position is tricky with all the Roosters being priced together in the mid-range, and Ezra Mam still being cheap but reliant on tries to boost his average so far (5 in 9 games). If you can get up to Reynolds I think it’s worth it, with more obvious value at other positions.


Hate It - Joey Manu $21,560

Manu threw a 76 in my face after I put him in this section last week, but I’m stubborn about refusing to play overpriced guys who are on a hot streak. Admittedly his role has clearly evolved from previous seasons. His incredible success in games at fullback and the halves has seen more free reign granted to roam the field even when playing at centre. I still think this even higher price is an easy fade, as last weeks score may not even be adequate. Hopefully some of the field chases those points and we get a more normal score around the 50 mark instead.


Hate It - Jordan Riki $15,260

Riki is another player on a hot streak, and it’s hard to play him when guys like Radley, Lodge, Butcher, Flegler and others project at least as well and are noticeably cheaper. His average of 49 in his last 9 games is well above what we’d seen previously, and like Mam it’s taken 4 tries in that span to get him there. With a tough opponent I’m happy to bet on regression striking and bringing him back down to earth a little.


Who Knows - Kobe Hetherington $11,220

Hetherington is essentially named to play the Carrigan role, which poses an interesting question. He did this a bit during the Origin period, as well as earlier in the season and in 2021 when Carrigan suffered injuries. Until Rd 17, it never amounted to a great deal, but then he dropped 70 minutes and 60 points on the Dragons just a month ago. Is he a 45 minute, sub-40 point guy? Or can he go higher on both of those numbers as the team ask him to be a poor mans Carrigan. Either way he’s cheap enough to be a solid play, but the single ceiling game forces us to consider that he might be far better than that on this slate.

Draftstars Suggested Team

Always remember to gamble responsibly. When the fun stops, stop. If gambling is having a negative impact on your life, seek support at Gambling Help Online.  18+ only.