North Queensland Cowboys vs Manly Sea Eagles Predictions: Cowboys can boost top-eight hopes

 | Friday 5th July 2024, 12:33pm

Friday 5th July 2024, 12:33pm

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North Queensland Cowboys face a crucial NRL fixture on Saturday when they welcome the Manly Sea Eagles to the Queensland Country Bank Stadium.

The Cowboys have hit form over the last couple of months to boost their chances of advancing to the finals series, a stage of the season the Sea Eagles are also in the mix to reach. Read on for my North Queensland Cowboys vs Manly Sea Eagles prediction, as well as the latest team news and odds.

North Queensland Cowboys vs Manly Sea Eagles Betting Tips

  • Handicap 3-Way - North Queensland -2 @ 10/11
  • Under 50.5 Total Points @ 5/6

Rugby League Odds

Team News

North Queensland will welcome all of their Origin stars back into the fold, with Val Holmes, Murray Taulagi, Tom Dearden, Reuben Cotter, Jeremiah Nanai and Reece Robson set to return.

Kulikefu Finefeuiaki, Sam McIntyre and Harrison Edwards all drop down to the bench alongside Griffin Neame.

The big news for Manly is the return of Tom Trbojevic, who has been out of action since picking up a hamstring injury in round 10 and will line up at centre here. Reuben Garrick is back from concussion to fill the other centre position, while Tolu Koula shifts to fullback.

Origin reps Daly Cherry-Evans, Jake Trbojevic and Haumole Olakau'atu all return to the starting side, as does Josh Aloiai, who is back after serving a suspension.

North Queensland Cowboys vs Manly Sea Eagles Odds

Handicap 3-Way - North Queensland -2 @ 10/11

North Queensland put in a brilliant performance to defeat the Penrith Panthers last time out, a match where they were without their Origin stars, but still managed to record their first win at the BlueBet Stadium since 2016.

After a slow start to the campaign, the Cowboys have now won five of their last six matches and have climbed into the top eight to give themselves a great chance of reaching the finals series.

With head coach Todd Payten welcoming back his Origin stars for this contest, North Queensland will be a stronger outfit than they have been in recent weeks and they should have enough to cover the handicap.

Visitors Manly failed to score in a 14-0 defeat to the Rabbitohs last time out and that was their fifth defeat from the last seven assignments, a run of results that has them outside of the top eight.

The Sea Eagles are also on a three-game losing streak away from home and they are unlikely to have any road joy at the Country Bank Stadium.

Under 50.5 Total Points @ 5/6

Both sides have been inconsistent in attack over recent weeks, with the Cowboys scoring 18, 12, 34 and 16 points in their last four fixtures while the Sea Eagles' last four efforts read 26, 22, 30 and 0.

In terms of total points this season, under 50.5 has landed in 10 of their 16 games, while Manley have gone under that mark in 11 of their 15 assignments.

This could turn out to be a tense affair and backing under 50.5 points to come in again looks like a solid play.

Find more Rugby League Tips here at Betfred Insights

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