NRL Friday: Sharks v Dragons betting tips, prediction & odds, round 11, 2021
Welcome to our Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks v St George Illawarra Dragons match preview, prediction and odds update for their NRL clash at Netstrata Jubilee Stadium, Sydney, on Friday, May 21.
This is a derby clash between two teams with a long history of animosity, and a quick look at the betting markets could leave you a little shocked given the recent form of both teams.
The Sharks have come up incredibly short favourites despite heading into this match with six losses in a row and slumping to 14th place on the table as opposed to the sixth-placed Dragons who have a respectable 5-5 win-loss record.
The discrepancy can be explained by the fact the Dragons have had four players banned at the tribunal after their Magic Round defeat at the hands of Melbourne Storm and have lost fullback Matt Dufty (shoulder) to injury.
This is the second NRL match on Friday night, with the earlier match between the 10th-placed New Zealand Warriors and 13th-placed Wests Tigers kicking off at 6pm AEST at Central Coast Stadium in Gosford.
The Sharks have won four of the past five clashes against the Dragons, including in round one this year when they won 32-18. The teams split their two meetings last season.
Sharks v Dragons team news for round 11
The Sharks have stuck with the same 17 who were brave in defeat against South Sydney last weekend, though quick-stepping half Shaun Johnson has been named in the reserves after recovering from a hamstring injury and will be a late inclusion if he is fit. It would be his 200th NRL game.
No such luck for the Dragons who have lost four players, Josh McGuire (five weeks), Tyrell Fuimaono (five weeks), Mikaele Ravalawa (two weeks) and Tariq Sims (one week), after all took early guilty please to various charges. It’s a devastating blow to Anthony Griffin’s team, who have show signs og big improvement this season.
The loss of Dufty also bites as he has been the Dragons’ main attacking weapon.
They had some good news with winger Jordan Pereira back after suspension, with Cody Ramsey moving from wing to fullback to cover for Dufty.
Jackson Ford comes into the second row, while youngsters Jaiyden Hunt, who makes his debut, Junior Amone come on to the bench.
Sharks v Dragons
Kick-off: 7.55pm local time
Venue: Netstrata Jubilee Stadium, Sydney
Head to head odds: Cronulla $1.43, St George Illawarra $2.90
Line: Cronulla (-6.5 points) $1.95, St George Illawarra (+6.5 points) $1.85
Match total: 45.5 points: over $1.95, under $1.85
Sharks v Dragons free betting tips
Below our NRL betting expert has highlighted free Sharks-Dragons tips for Friday night’s game.
Sharks -6.5 points/match total over 42.5 points
This alternate line with Aussie bookie TopSport is paying $3.15. While there is some dicey weather about, these teams are two of the worst defensive teams in the comp, so the points should flow, especially given the makeshift nature of the Dragons line-up.
Mawene Hiroti to score 2+ tries
The Sharks winger has scored five tries from eight matches in a side that has largely been beaten pretty easily. He should have a field day here against the Dragons, along with elusive fullback William Kennedy.
Cronulla Sharks v St George Illawarra Dragons prediction 21-5-2021
You need a heart like a lion to back the Sharks with any sort of confidence given they have lost six on the bounce, but likewise it’s almost impossible to tip the Dragons given the heart has been ripped out of their line-up. The Dragons will be brave, as they were against the Storm last weekend after being reduced to 12 men early on by a red card. But the Sharks have the luxury of extra rest and a much more complete roster to pick from for this clash. That surely will be enough for them to give stand-in coach Josh Hannay his first win since taking over from the unlucky departed coach John Morris. Our Sharks v Dragons prediction: Cronulla to win by 16 points.
Sharks v Dragons lowdown
Nine, Fox League and KAYO will telecast the game.
All of the top International betting sites will offer markets on the NRL.
The match kicks off at 7.55pm AEST
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