The Fifth Tackle: Round 16 v Broncos
TWO of the NRL's most explosive teams clash when the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs host the Brisbane Broncos on Saturday evening.
The two clubs haved played out some of the competitions most tense games in recent years and this is one is sure to carry on that tradition.
Both clubs head into the clash fresh off a bye and these are the five questions facing both sides.
What will the bye tell us?
The Bulldogs and Broncos both come into the Round 16 fixture at ANZ Stadium fresh off a bye and wins in their previous encounters before the break. The bye is a chance for clubs to freshen up and take their minds away from footy, and it came at a perfect time for both sides with a heavy schedule to begin the season and a host of stars required for rep duty. The bye can re-energise your players or it can take some time to get back into the groove, but what will the break tell us on Saturday night?
Who will back up?
Eight players from both the Bulldogs and Broncos will be looking to back-up on Saturday night after a gruelling Origin encounter three days before. Off the back of game one, Wayne Bennett rested two of his players (Corey Oates and Matt Gillett), while Josh Morris, Josh Jackson and David Klemmer all backed up for the Bulldogs against the Sharks following game one. A question mark still hangs over the fitness of Josh Morris, but will Des and Wayne rest any of their players for the crucial encounter at ANZ Stadium on Saturday night?
Will Josh Morris play?
Bulldogs and Blues centre Josh Morris will be racing the clock to be fit for his battle with Broncos speedster James Roberts. The experienced Morris was ruled out of State of Origin II with a groin strain. His injury is a blow for the Blues and would be an even greater loss for the Bulldogs. Although still in camp, can Morris do everything right to take the field on Saturday or will Des opt for a new three quarter to partner Rona on the left hand side?
The need for two points!
The Bulldogs host the Broncos on Saturday night at ANZ Stadium and will be looking to register just their second win against the 2015 Grand Finalists in six outings. The record against Brisbane has not been good over the past few seasons with the boys from Belmore only winning one of the last five. Improving that record is a must and a win on Saturday night will see the Bulldogs go level on points with the Broncos and continue their climb towards the top four.
Which halves will stand up?
The Bulldogs and Broncos both feature exciting halves combos in Moses Mbye, Josh Reynolds, Ben Hunt and Anthony Milford. Both sets of halves have been impressive in the 2016 and the stats don’t lie. The Bulldogs pair have 16 line breaks, 16 line break assists, 18 try assists and 11 tries between them, while the Broncos pair have 16 line breaks, 23 line break assists, 26 try assists and 14 tries next to their names in 2016. With a bye and host of rep stars backing up, both sides will be looking to their six and seven to fire, but who will it be?