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Storm set to outshine Raiders and progress to NRL decider

Fri, Sep 23, 1:25pm by Christopher Duffy

NRL Preliminary Final 2 – Storm v Raiders

Date and Time: Saturday September 24, 7:40pm AEST

Venue: AAMI Park

TV: Channel 7, Fox Footy

The top-ranked sides at the end of the regular NRL season meet in this Preliminary Final. Minor Premiers, the Melbourne Storm face the second placed Canberra Raiders. Often it is not the case that the best sides on the ladder manage to navigate the playoff system. This year, however, they have found a path through. The Raiders and Storm are now only one win away from a place in the Grand Final.

The Storm are current favourites to back up their Minor Premiership with an outright victory of the NRL crown. Sportsbet have them priced at $2.50 to go all the way. Canberra stand the furthest from the prize in terms of the odds. They stand at $6.00 behind the Storm, Sharks and Cowboys. They have a mountain to climb but at this stage of the year anything can happen.

WATCH: We pick out the Best Bets for the NRL Preliminary Finals

For either side to claim the ultimate prize, first they must overcome each other in what is shaping up to be an epic contest at AAMI Park. The Storm top the odds priced at $1.45 with Sportsbet. With a number of factors working in their favour they will head into this match high on confidence. Home ground advantage, a rest week and one of their star players, Cooper Cronk, making his 300th appearance for the club. The omens are good for a Storm victory.

Canberra may well not be favourites to win this match but they will have the belief that they can do so. The only time these clubs met this season they were the victors, albeit in Canberra. Being one of only a few teams to beat the Storm this year must give them the confidence that they can repeat that feat and overturn a price of $2.85. The Raiders outside backs have been outstanding all year and will look to test the defensive prowess of their opposite men in purple.

The Storm’s advantage heading into this match is further highlighted by the prices that Sportsbet are offering on a winning margin. A Big Win of 13+ points for Melbourne is the shortest priced of any of the margins at $2.65. In contrast to a Raiders win by the same score priced at $9.00. A Little Win of 1-12 points stands at $2.90 for the Storm and $4.25 for the Raiders.

Suliasi Vunivalu stands alone as the favourite to add to his tally of tries for this season in this Preliminary Final. He has the best prices of any player in both sides for First Tryscorer ($6.00), Anytime Tryscorer ($1.53), To Score 2 or More Tries ($3.60) and 3 or More ($11.00) in 80 minutes. His closest competitor from the Raiders Jordan Rapana who boasts prices of $10.00, $2.10, $7.50 and $34.00 respectively.

With everything on the line in this match tensions will high and the pressure even more so. Ultimately the side that claims victory here will be the one who best responds to those factors. The Storm have been in this situation many times before and it is hard not to see them having the experience to defeat the Raiders.

Bet of the Match: Storm to Win by 1-12 points at $2.90

Head to Head Includes extra time. (Sportsbet)

Melbourne Storm $1.45

Canberra Raiders $2.85

Big Win Little Win (80 Mins) 

Resulted at the completion of normal time (does not include extra time).

Melbourne Storm 1 To 12 2.90

Melbourne Storm 13+ 2.65

Draw 19.00

Canberra Raiders 1 To 12 4.25

Canberra Raiders 13+ 9.00

First Tryscorer 

Suliasi Vunivalu 6.00

No Try Scored 151.00

Jordan Rapana 10.00

Marika Koroibete 7.50

Penalty Try 151.00

Jarrod Croker 14.00

Will Chambers 12.00

Edrick Lee 17.00

Cooper Cronk 15.00

Joseph Leilua 17.00

Cheyse Blair 17.00

Blake Austin 21.00

Cameron Munster 17.00

Jack Wighton 23.00

Ben Hampton 21.00

Josh Papalii 26.00

Blake Green 23.00

Joseph Tapine 34.00

Kenny Bromwich 26.00

Josh Hodgson 34.00

Tohu Harris 26.00

Elliott Whitehead 36.00

Kevin Proctor 26.00

Kurt Baptiste 36.00

Dale Finucane 36.00

Shannon Boyd 41.00

Jesse Bromwich 36.00

Aidan Sezer 46.00

Christian Welch 36.00

Luke Bateman 51.00

Cameron Smith 41.00

Iosia Soliola 51.00

Tim Glasby 51.00

Paul Vaughan 51.00

Jordan McLean 51.00

Junior Paulo 51.00

Line 

Melbourne Storm (-7.5) 1.91

Canberra Raiders (+7.5) 1.91


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