If it wasn’t hard enough trying to predict the outcome of games in Super League, the internationals at the weekend have left some teams more depleted than others making this a weekend where anything can happen.
Castleford have been hard hit by England call ups as Gale, Hardaker and Mcmeeken are all down under so Daryl Powell has to make do without his scrum half, full back and a regular tryscorer for the trip to Huddersfield which is live on Thursday Night Rugby.
The Tigers are also without Ben Roberts, Jermaine Mcgilvary has also been called into the England squad so he sits this one out for the Giants.
Powell, despite being top of the league, will be slightly concerned by Castleford’s form on the road as they have lost 3 of their last 4 fixtures away from home, the win being against a severely depleted Wigan side last month.
I’m on record saying that Huddersfield are the worst side in the league but they were very impressive at Headingley last week, that was though their 1st win for 8 games.
There were some tight games in that run of results, including 2 draws, and this alongside the Tigers poor form on the road leads me to think that Huddersfield can stay inside the 12 point handicap put up by Super League sponsors Betfred. It’s also worth remembering that whilst Castleford played Wigan on Saturday, Huddersfield have had a full week since their win over the Rhinos, the extra 2 days rest can really make a difference for these Thursday night games.
Admittedly it is only 4 weeks since the Tigers scored 50 points against the Giants but Gale in particular will be a big miss and whilst I’m not sure that the hosts can win the game at odds of 10/3 I do think they can stay inside 2 scores. Castleford have a 100% record at home but have been inconsistent on their travels, they are 1/4 to win this and given the above those are very short odds, mind you this can be boosted to 8/15 on the Half Time Full Time.
It’s a risky ploy going against the best side in the league, especially when they are playing a side at the bottom end of the table, and whist I think Cas may get home it may only be by around 6/10 points meaning the value has to be Huddersfield on the handicap.
Eden and Minikin head 1st try betting at around 7/1 but I’d prefer centre jake Webster at around 14/1.
Aaron Murphy looks good value at 14/1 in a Giants shirt
Finally the dreaded man of the match, been some terrible choices by the Sky team lately . Brough really should have got it last week, 7/1 looks decent for him to make it right today.
Rangi Chase is the market leader at 6/1 but Paul Mcshane is crucial to how the Tigers play and his role will be key here given the players absent. 10/1 looks OK for the Cas hooker so it’s Brough and Mcshane for me.
Back tomorrow for Warrington v St Helens, as always please gamble responsibly.