The field has been reduced to 91m due to player safety concerns. This will condense the Australian attack and play more to the New Zealand’s chances of covering this spread. With the forward battle being of more importance now than an expansive back line being able to run around teams.
Weather conditions: 35% of rain at 12pm, this drops to 24% at 1 pm and 13% by kick off at 2pm. The weather doesn’t rise above a balmy 6*c during game time with humidity in between 77-79%. This will add to the predicted forward battle tonight, to which New Zealand’s forwards get a massive boost with J. Taumalolo and K. Proctor returning from a week off. Australia are left without Veteran S. Thaiday who has undergone surgery in order to allow him to get back home to Australia. Likely replacement S. Boyd is a young up and comer (67 NRL games) but does have an error or penalty in him.
If New Zealand can stop the fast starting Australian attack, they will come close to winning this match let alone covering the 10 points. This is the game that counts and New Zealand’s past has shown that they can get up for a game. Will they? Time will tell
With a shortened field and not the best weather just before game time and during, this line looks a little large for us.
Safe Bet – Game Line – NZ +10.5 @ 1.92 (Luxbet)
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