New Zealand Warriors vs Illawarra Dragons Predictions and Betting Tips
🏈 NRL Round 26 Match Preview
⏰ 25 August 2023 - 18:00 AEST
🏟 Stadium - Mt. Smart Stadium
Rugby League fans are gearing up for an entertaining contest when the New Zealand Warriors take on the St. George Illawarra Dragons. The NRL clubs go head-to-head on 25/08/2023 at 6:00 pm AEST.
In anticipation of this highly-anticipated match, AusBetSites has compiled the latest betting odds from 3 betting sites in Australia across 22 wagering markets. The oddsmakers had installed the Warriors as firm favourites entering the game with moneyline odds of 1.1.
The New Zealand Warriors will look to seal a top four spot when they take on the struggling St George Illawarra Dragons this Friday night in Auckland. It has been a tremendous season for the Warriors, who come into this clash after winning nine of their previous ten games. Another victory would give them seven straight wins for the first time since 2002, when they made the Grand Final.
Securing a finals place is the goal, and a win over the Dragons would achieve that top four position and give them a second chance in the playoffs. The Warriors will want to tighten their defense after leaking 22 points in their last two games to lower-ranked teams. The electric form of winger Dallin Watene-Zelezniak has been a highlight, scoring 19 tries in his past 12 matches. He looms as a major threat out wide again.
The Dragons have endured another disappointing campaign but should avoid the wooden spoon. Their away form has been woeful, losing all 11 road games this season. However, the Dragons have been competitive lately, with no loss by more than 10 points in their past five matches. They will be hoping to test the Warriors this Friday night in New Zealand.
New Zealand Warriors vs Illawarra Dragons Head-to-Head
The head-to-head record over the past 8 years reflects the New Zealand Warriors' dominance in this matchup against the St. George Illawarra Dragons. In their last 12 meetings, the Warriors hold a decisive edge with 7 wins compared to just 5 for the Dragons. The remaining games ended in draws. With no draws in the matchup recently, the Warriors' superior head-to-head record demonstrates their command of the rivalry over the last near-decade. Having picked up 7 wins against 5 for the Dragons during this period, the Warriors have clearly had St. George Illawarra's number. Based on this lopsided head-to-head history, New Zealand will enter the upcoming contest with plenty of confidence as they look to continue their winning ways against their struggling rivals.
New Zealand Warriors Performance
🟩🟩🟩🟩🟩 The New Zealand Warriors head into this matchup riding an impressive five-game winning streak. With five consecutive victories under their belt, it's clear this Warriors team is firing on all cylinders right now. The squad seems to have hit its stride, with their confidence no doubt sky-high following the dominant string of wins. If the Warriors can keep their momentum going and make it six wins in a row against the Dragons, it would mark an incredibly dominant run that cements their status as a real force this season. Having secured five straight triumphs, the Warriors will be determined to extend their exceptional form against a struggling St. George Illawarra outfit.
Illawarra Dragons Performance
🟥🟥🟥🟥🟩 The St. George Illawarra Dragons head into this match desperate to turn around their fortunes after a woeful run of results. In their last five games, the Dragons have managed just a single win against four consecutive defeats. With only one victory in their previous five outings, it's clear the Dragons have hit a major slump, losing momentum and confidence. The sole win and four losses in their most recent contests highlight St. George Illawarra's severe struggles lately when it comes to consistently posting positive results. They will be eager to bounce back from their losing streak with a much-needed win over the in-form Warriors. If the out-of-sorts Dragons are to have any chance at an upset, they must regain their best form after stumbling to just one win from their last five games.
📋 Players to watch:
- Dallin Watene-Zelezniak has been electric for the Warriors, scoring 19 tries in just 12 matches. He'll be the main threat out wide.
- Dragons winger Mikaele Ravalawa has also been in hot form, crossing for 11 tries in his past 7 games.
- Warriors playmaker Shaun Johnson loves playing against the Red V, having scored tries in 3 of his last 4 matches against the Dragons.
Watene-Zelezniak and Ravalawa have been crossing with ease lately, so expect plenty of tries from the wingers. Meanwhile, Johnson will be looking to add to his strong record against the Dragons. With these try-scorers in career-best form, points could flow when these two clubs meet on Friday night.
⚡ Match Facts:
- The Warriors have dominated the rivalry historically, winning 7 of the last 12 meetings compared to just 5 wins for the Dragons. The lopsided head-to-head favors New Zealand.
- The Warriors are riding a hot 5-game winning streak while the Dragons have lost 4 straight. Momentum is clearly on the Warriors' side.
- New Zealand sits 3rd in the table with 15 wins, while St. George Illawarra is second-last with just 5 wins all season. The standings reflect the Warriors' superiority.
- In their last meeting in June, the Warriors earned a huge 48-18 win over the Dragons. A similar comfortable margin seems likely.
- The Dragons have the worst defense in the league, conceding the most points per game. The Warriors should be able to take advantage.
- A 30-12 scoreline would reflect the Warriors' dominance historically and their current red-hot form. I expect their winning run to continue.
💡 Match Prediction:
According to predictive models, the New Zealand Warriors entered the matchup as overwhelming favourites against the St. George Illawarra Dragons. The probability sits at a massive 89.6% for the Warriors compared to just 10.4% for the Dragons to cause a monumental upset. That translates to lopsided fair odds of $1.12 for New Zealand and $9.63 for St. George Illawarra, highlighting the Warriors' perceived dominance. With the Warriors' stellar current form on a 5-game winning streak and the Dragons having lost 4 straight, plus the head-to-head history favouring New Zealand, their status as clear favourites is unsurprising.
The forecast calls for the Warriors to prevail by an estimated 25 points, reflecting their expected supremacy in the contest. The data suggests the red-hot Warriors should continue their winning ways against the struggling Dragons.
Warriors vs Dragons Score Prediction: 30-12 or Warriors to win by 25 points
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