MOST armchair rugby league aficionados find it hard to look past their passion and bias for their beloved teams.
Cronulla Sharks fans tell everyone the porch light will finally be turned off, every season, the same way South Sydney Rabbitohs fans far and wide remain convinced every year will end the bunnies’ 40-year premiership drought.
Canberra Raiders fans find it hard to accept their beloved green machine’s inevitable mediocrity, while North Queensland fans have been telling us for years the Cowboys would have several titles if they weren’t continually robbed by referees come finals time.
Fortunately for the average punter, Orange man Nick Tedeschi has no issue passing on his wealth of knowledge on the game.
Tedeschi, a rugby league tragic, has once again produced his guide to NRL betting, which features a thorough analysis of all clubs and their chances based on a breakdown of rosters, recruitment and statistics, complete with a prediction for each club in 2014.
Tedeschi has written extensively on rugby league for various national publications and, along with his experience in bookmaking, has the credentials to back up his predictions.
In season 2014, Tedeschi says punters should load up on the South Sydney Rabbitohs for the title and the master tipster highlighted North Queensland as a top-four prospect.
“I really like the Cowboys,” he said.
“They’ve done everything right in pre-season, and Paul Green is a good coach.”
Steer clear of the Parramatta Eels, Canberra Raiders, Brisbane Broncos and Wests Tigers, Tedeschi says.
“I’m really against [Raiders coach] Ricky Stuart,” he explained.
“He’s not the coach people think he is.”
Despite a stellar 2013 which resulted in a premiership, Tedeschi also warned punters to shy away from the Sydney Roosters.
“They got very lucky in 2013,” he explained.
“They had virtually no injuries, got lucky with a few risky buys like Sonny-Bill [Williams], [James] Maloney and [Michael] Jennings, and won a lot of close games. They’ll be a good side, but not a top-four side.”
The Punters Guide to the 2014 NRL Season is available in all good book stores, and on iTunes.