Beleaguered Bulls no forlorn hope against weakened Robins.
Televised Super League action moves from the sublime to the ridiculous this week.
Yes, the coachless Bradford Bulls – a club which has been sleepwalking towards oblivion all season – host an out-of-sorts and injury-ravaged Hull KR side whose season is teetering on the cusp of implosion.
From a betting perspective, it’s very hard to get a handle on this game.
The beleaguered Bulls – beset by takeover sagas and player departures all season – finally lost their appeal against a six points penalty for entering administration last week and looked a team devoid of belief or motivation when capitulating meekly at Salford on Sunday.
That 46-18 thrashing against a side who hadn’t won themselves for eight games was labelled “pathetic” by coach Francis Cummins and, less then 24 hours later, he was history.
Captain Matt Diskin has been entrusted to select this week’s squad in a ‘caretaker player-coach’ capacity but any bettors banking on a “new coach effect” should tread carefully.
Diskin himself was at pains to stress he wasn’t in favour of Cummins dismissal – a belief echoed by a number of players on social media – so, it’s hard to envisage that a change of coach alone will dramatically improve the morale of the Bulls players, particularly on the back of a short five-day turnaround.
If the Bulls are to get anything from this game, it will probably have more to do with the fact that their opponents Hull KR are mired by adversity themselves.
Successive victories over arch-rivals Hull FC and London Broncos had seen the Robins move up into the play-off positions, but a disastrous defeat at Castleford followed by an abject effort at home to Warrington has seen their season unravel quickly.
It has to be said, Rovers have been desperately unlucky with injuries – Jamie Langley recently became the fourth of Rovers’ starting pack to be ruled out for the season – and the selection options available to Craig Sandercock have been compromised further due to disciplinary issues ruling out prop Johnny Walker and lively winger Wayne Ulugia – one of the few brights spots against Warrington.
There is no question this is the weakest squad Sandercock has selected all season and, robbed of so much forward power, Rovers are by means guaranteed to physically dominate Bradford’s lightweight pack as so many other sides have been able to do all year.
It’s also worth bearing in mind that Rovers have a poor record at the Provident Stadium, having won there just once in seven Super League games.
So punters have been basically set a conundrum of which team is in a worst position coming into this game?
With so many imponderables at play, it really is hard to take a strong opinion either way, so we at BetBright wouldn’t put anyone off taking a speculative punt on the draw at 18/1 in the match betting.
Providing the weather remains dry, it may instead pay to approach this game from a points angle.
The match kicks off at 8.00pm on Friday night at Bradford’s Provident Stadium (Odsal).
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