NRL 2024 Round 1 – Betting tips & Predictions

NRL 2024 Round 1

If you feel like the NRL just finished a few months ago, you wouldn’t be wrong. With a 32 week-long season, the NRL is back in the blink of an eye for another year. This weekend the 2024 NRL kicks off in Las Vegas with a double header, before the remaining six matches unfold over the week. Read on as we break down each game, outlining the best bets to make using the latest odds from the top betting sites

Round 1 Fixtures

FixturesInfo (AEST)Home OddsAway Odds
Sea Eagles vs RabbitohsAllegiant Stadium, Sunday 12:30pm2.001.82
Roosters vs BroncosAllegiant Stadium, Sunday 2:30pm2.351.60
Knights vs RaidersMcDonald Jones Stadium, Thursday 7pm1.442.80
Warriors vs SharksMt Smart Stadium, Friday 5pm1.542.50
Storm vs PanthersAAMI Park, Friday 7:05pm2.151.72
Eels vs BulldogsCommBank Stadium, Saturday 4:30pm1.442.80
Titans vs DragonsCbus Super Stadium, Saturday 6:35pm1.502.60
Dolphins vs CowboysSuncorp Stadium, Sunday, 3:05pm2.701.47

Manly Sea Eagles vs South Sydney Rabbitohs

The 2024 NRL season kicks off with a hiss and a roar in Sin City, as two teams that narrowly missed the eight square off in the opening match. While this clash feels like something of a coin toss, we give the Rabbitohs the edge here thanks to their nice acquisitions over the off-season. Expect a bit of a niggly encounter though, with a few dropped balls as the rust and jetlag take their toll. 

We wouldn’t be surprised in the slightest to see a half-time/full-time swing either, with Manly possibly starting stronger before South Sydney’s class sees them over the line by the full-time whistle. Expect Jason Saab to be dangerous too on the wider Las Vegas fields. 

BookmakerBren’s TipOdds
Playup logoRabbitohs to win $1.81
TopSport logoRabbitohs -1.5 $1.90
Bet365 LogoUnder 41.5$1.82

Official Squads

Sea Eagles: 1. Tom Trbojevic 2. Jason Saab 3. Tolu Koula 4. Reuben Garrick 5. Jaxson Paulo 6. Luke Brooks 7. Daly Cherry-Evans 8. Taniela Paseka 9. Lachlan Croker 10. Josh Aloiai 11. Haumole Olakau’atu 12. Ben Trbojevic 13. Jake Trbojevic 14. Karl Lawton 15. Corey Waddell 16. Ethan Bullemor 17. Nathan Brown  

Rabbitohs: 1. Latrell Mitchell 2. Alex Johnston 3. Isaiah Tass 4. Richard Kennar 5. Jacob Gagai 6. Cody Walker 7. Lachlan Ilias 8. Tevita Tatola 9. Damien Cook 10. Sean Keppie 11. Keaon Koloamatangi 12. Jai Arrow 13. Cameron Murray 14. Siliva Havili 15. Jacob Host 16. Davvy Moale 17. Tom Burgess

Sydney Roosters vs Brisbane Broncos

Brace yourselves NRL fans, Manly vs South Sydney was just the curtain raiser. The real heat comes in the second match of the season, as we have a classic ding-dong between two teams that are considered genuine contenders in 2024. 

Clashes between these two sides have been high scoring in the past, with each of the last seven matches going over 40.5 points. We say that will be the case again on the weekend, as two wicked attacks go up against untested defences. The Broncos should get home here by a comfortable margin, but not without the first hour being a real challenge for the boys from Brisbane. 

BookmakerBren’s TipOdds
Playup logoBroncos to win $1.60
TopSport logoOver 39.5 $1.88
Bet365 LogoBroncos 13+ $3.00

Official Squads

Roosters: 1. James Tedesco 2. Daniel Tupou 3. Billy Smith 4. Joey Manu 5. Joseph Suaalii 6. Luke Keary 7. Sam Walker 8. Spencer Leniu 9. Brandon Smith 10. Lindsay Collins 11. Siua Wong 12. Sitili Tupouniua 13. Victor Radley 14. Sandon Smith 15. Naufahu Whyte 16. Nat Butcher 17. Terrell May  

Broncos: 1. Reece Walsh 2. Jesse Arthars 3. Kotoni Staggs 4. Selwyn Cobbo 5. Deine Mariner 6. Ezra Mam 7. Adam Reynolds 8. Corey Jensen 9. Billy Walters 10. Payne Haas 11. Brendan Piakura 12. Jordan Riki 13. Patrick Carrigan 14. Tyson Smoothy 15. Fletcher Baker 16. Kobe Hetherington 17. Xavier Willison

Newcastle Knights vs Canberra Raiders

The Raiders ended 2023 with a fizzle, while the Knights absolutely steamed into the playoffs. With such contrasting ends to their seasons, how will each fare this year? Thursday night will tell us a lot as Canberra head to Newcastle for a tasty round one clash. 

We’re picking an upset here, as we think the hangover of 2023 might see the Knights make a slow start this season. Remember, they were downright lousy until they flicked a switch and won nine games on the trot to scrape into the last eight. The loss of Dom Young, a huge part of their revival last year, will hit them hard as well. It’ll be an ugly away win for the Raiders, but expect a few disappointed Knights fans on Thursday, when the winning of 2023 doesn’t immediately continue in Newcastle. 

BookmakerBren’s TipOdds
Playup logoRaiders to win $2.85
TopSport logoRaiders to win $2.85
Bet365 LogoRaiders to win $2.80

Official Squads

Knights: 1. Kalyn Ponga 2. Greg Marzhew 3. Bradman Best 4. Dane Gagai 5. Enari Tuala 6. Tyson Gamble 7. Jackson Hastings 8. Leo Thompson 9. Jayden Brailey 10. Jacob Saifiti 11. Tyson Frizell 12. Dylan Lucas 13. Adam Elliott 14. Phoenix Crossland 15. Daniel Saifiti 16. Kai Pearce-Paul 17. Jack Hetherington 

Raiders: 1. Jordan Rapana 2. Nick Cotric 3. Matt Timoko 4. Ethan Strange 5. Xavier Savage 6. Kaeo Weekes 7. Jamal Fogarty 8. Josh Papalii 9. Zac Woolford 10. Joseph Tapine 11. Hudson Young 12. Elliott Whitehead 13. Morgan Smithies 14. Tom Starling 15. Emre Guler 16. Zac Hosking 17. Pasami Saulo. 

New Zealand Warriors vs Cronulla Sharks

The New Zealand Warriors had their best season in more than a decade last year, and will be eager to show they aren’t one-hit wonders this year. Cronulla, on the other hand, started well but will be disappointed to have exited in the first week of finals after showing so much promise. 

The Warriors beat the Sharks twice last year, with their most recent encounter being a 44-12 drubbing. We expect much of the same on Friday night, with the Kiwis adding some excellent additions to their squad over the off-season, and Cronulla continuing to struggle against the Warriors. In a packed-out Mount Smart Stadium, where the author of this article may or may not be yelling his head off in the crowd, expect the Warriors to give their home fans plenty to cheer about. 

BookmakerBren’s TipOdds
Playup logoWarriors to win $1.55
TopSport logoWarriors to win$1.54
Bet365 LogoWarriors to win$1.54

Official Squads

Warriors: 1. Taine Tuaupiki 2. Dallin Watene-Zelezniak 3. Roger Tuivasa-Sheck 4. Rocco Berry 5. Marcelo Montoya 6. Luke Metcalf 7. Shaun Johnson 8. Addin Fonua-Blake 9. Wayde Egan 10. Mitch Barnett 11. Jackson Ford 12. Kurt Capewell 13. Tohu Harris 14. Dylan Walker 15. Marata Niukore 16. Bunty Afoa 17. Tom Ale 

Sharks: 1. Will Kennedy 2. Sione Katoa 3. Jesse Ramien 4. Sifa Talakai 5. Ronaldo Mulitalo 6. Nicho Hynes 7. Braydon Trindall 8. Braden Hamlin-Uele 9. Blayke Brailey 10. Toby Rudolf 11. Briton Nikora 12. Teig Wilton 13. Dale Finucane 14. Cameron McInnes 15. Royce Hunt 16. Tom Hazelton 17. Oregon Kaufusi 

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Melbourne Storm vs Penrith Panthers

In what could easily be the final match of the NRL 2024, two heavyweight sides go toe-to-toe in the opening round of the competition. Penrith are chasing a rare three-peat, while the Melbourne Storm are always in contention for a title. There are more than just competition points on the line here, however, as the Storm will still have a sour taste in their mouths from their embarrassing preliminary final defeat at the Panther’s hands last year. 

Speaking of which, we simply don’t see enough change from either side to expect a different result on Friday night. Sure, the Panthers have been known to drop a game or two early on in the season (they did so this time last year), but it’s unlikely to be the case this year. Melbourne are also notoriously slow starters, so we should see a messy, low-scoring clash in which Penrith prevail. 

BookmakerBren’s TipOdds
Playup logoPanthers to win $1.72
TopSport logoPanthers to win $1.70
Bet365 LogoPanthers to win $1.72

Official Squads

Storm: 1. Ryan Papenhuyzen 2. Xavier Coates 3. Nick Meaney 4. Reimis Smith 5. Will Warbrick 6. Cameron Munster 7. Jahrome Hughes 8. Christian Welch 9. Harry Grant 10. Tui Kamikamica 11. Eli Katoa 12. Shawn Blore 13. Josh King 14. Bronson Garlick 15. Nelson Asofa-Solomona 16. Trent Loiero 17. Sua Fa'alogo 

Panthers: 1. Dylan Edwards 2. Sunia Turuva 3. Taylan May 4. Izack Tago 5. Brian To'o 6. Jarome Luai 7. Nathan Cleary 8. Moses Leota 9. Soni Luke 10. James Fisher-Harris 11. Scott Sorensen 12. Liam Martin 13. Isaah Yeo 14. Tyrone Peachey 15. Lindsay Smith 16. Luke Garner 17. Liam Henry 

Parramatta Eels vs Canterbury Bulldogs

This one could be messy. Both sides missed the playoffs last year, with Parramatta in contention right until the last week, while the Bulldogs were battling to avoid the wooden spoon. Neither side will want a repeat of their 2023 seasons, and Canterbury have made some tangible steps in the right direction during the off-season. The acquisition of Stephen Crichton should bolster their backline, while the Eels will struggle initially thanks to a three-week ban to Maika Sivo. 

The head says Parramatta here, but the heart says Canterbury. Expect the Bulldogs to throw the kitchen sink at the Eels and come devastatingly close to starting their season with a rare win. However, we just can’t bring ourselves to back the perennial cellar-dwellers to get the job done, with the Eels getting over the line at the death in this one. 

BookmakerBren’s TipOdds
Playup logoEels to win $1.44
TopSport logoEels to win $1.42
Bet365 LogoEels to win $1.44

Official Squads

Eels: 1. Clint Gutherson 2. Bailey Simonsson 3. Will Penisini 4. Morgan Harper 5. Sean Russell 6. Dylan Brown 7. Mitchell Moses 8. Junior Paulo 9. Brendan Hands 10. Reagan Campbell-Gillard 11. Shaun Lane 12. Bryce Cartwright 13. J’maine Hopgood 14. Ryan Matterson 15. Joe Ofahengaue 16. Kelma Tuilagi 17. Wiremu Greig 

Bulldogs: 1. Blake Taaffe 2. Jacob Kiraz 3. Bronson Xerri 4. Stephen Crichton 5. Josh Addo-Carr 6. Matt Burton 7. Drew Hutchison 8. Max King 9. Reed Mahoney 10. Liam Knight 11. Villiame Kikau 12. Jacob Preston 13. Josh Curran 14. Kurt Mann 15. Harrison Edwards 16. Samuel Hughes 17. Jaeman Salmon 

Gold Coast Titans vs St George/Illawarra Dragons

Another battle of the wooden spoon contenders unfolds on Saturday night. This time, it’s the Gold Coast Titans, who have shown flashes of brilliance amidst plenty of disappointment, up against the steadily poor St George/Illawarra Dragons. With only 14 wins between these two sides out of 48 matches in 2023, who will grab the rare victory next weekend? 

We’re picking another upset here, with the Dragons—who won one of their last 10 games in 2023—to start the year strong in Robina. They’ve had a busy off-season bringing in new talent and cutting off some dead wood. There’s a good chance this will revitalise their team culture, and coming up against a side that performed poorly last year but has changed very little, we like the odds of 2.60 at bookmaker PlayUp for the Dragons to win. 

BookmakerBren’s TipOdds
Playup logoDragons to win $2.60
TopSport logoDragons to win $2.55
Bet365 LogoDragons to win $2.60

Official Squads

Titans: 1. Keano Kini 2. Alofi Khan-Pereira 3. AJ Brimson 4. Brian Kelly 5. Phillip Sami 6. Kieran Foran 7. Tanah Boyd 8. Moeaki Fotuaika 9. Sam Verrills 10. Keenan Palasia 11. Beau Fermor 12. Jacob Alick 13. Tino Fa’asuamalaeaui 14. Erin Clark 15. Jaimin Jolliffe 16. Isaac Liu 17. Klese Haas 

Dragons: 1. Tyrell Sloan 2. Zac Lomax 3. Moses Suli 4. Jack Bird 5. Mikaele Ravalawa 6. Kyle Flanagan 7. Ben Hunt  8. Hame Sele 9. Jacob Liddle 10. Blake Lawrie 11. Tom Eisenhuth 12. Jaydn Su’a 13. Jack de Belin 14. Connor Muhleisen 15. Francis Molo 16. Michael Molo 17. Raymond Faitala-Mariner. 

Redcliffe Dolphins vs North Queensland Cowboys

An all-Queensland encounter rounds out the opening round of the NRL 2024, with the Dolphins taking on the Cowboys. Can the competition’s newest side do what they did last year and take the league world by storm with a dominant start to the season?  

It wouldn’t be the biggest surprise if they did, to be fair. The Redcliffe Dolphins have added an exciting centres pairing of Jake Averillo and Herbie Farnworth, which gives their attack even more flair alongside Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow and Jamayne Isaako. Technically it’s an upset picking the Dollies here, but we say that the magic of Wayne Bennett in the off-season, some fresh faces and a home crowd are all they need to get across the line at Suncorp. Back the Dolphins to defy the bookies and start the year victorious yet again. 

BookmakerBren’s TipOdds
Playup logoDolphins to win $2.75
TopSport logoDolphins to win $2.60
Bet365 LogoDolphins to win $2.70

Official Squads

Dolphins: 1. Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow 2. Jamayne Isaako 3. Herbie Farnworth 4. Jake Averillo 5. Jack Bostock 6. Isaiya Katoa 7. Sean O’Sullivan 8. Tom Flegler 9. Jeremy Marshall-King 10. Jesse Bromwich 11. Felise Kaufusi 12. Kenny Bromwich 13. Jarrod Wallace 14. Kodi Nikorima 15. Connelly Lemuelu 16. Euan Aitken 17. Mark Nicholls 

Cowboys: 1. Scott Drinkwater 2. Kyle Feldt 3. Murray Taulagi 4. Valentine Holmes 5. Semi Valemei 6. Tom Dearden 7. Chad Townsend 8. Jordan McLean 9. Reece Robson 10. Jason Taumalolo 11. Heilum Luki 12. Jeremiah Nanai 13. Rueben Cotter 14. Jake Granville 15. Griffin Neame 16. Kulikefu Finefeuiaki 17. Sam McIntyre 

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