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NRL: A look at the week ahead

We have another exciting week of action to look forward to down under with two semi-finals set to take place in the NRL, two preliminary finals in the AFL, while the Wallabies take on New Zealand in the Rugby Championship.

It is the business end of the season in the NRL and AFL and we are edging closer to the grand finals in both sports.

By the end of the forthcoming week we will know the make-up of the AFL grand final that will be played at the MCG on 24th September.

The NRL is a week behind but we have two semi-finals to look forward to with the winners heading through to the preliminary final when they will be just one step away from the big dance.

Elsewhere in the week ahead we see the Wallabies return to action when they take on New Zealand in the first of two Rugby Championship games to be played between the two sides.

It promises to be a super exciting week so let’s take a closer look at what is on the agenda over the next seven days. 

NRL: Semi-final action

It was an exciting first week of finals in the NRL with some classic games and one big upset in particular.

Minor premiers Penrith showed that they mean business when booking their place in the preliminary final with a convincing 27-8 victory over the Parramatta Eels on Friday night.

They will now enjoy a week off and wait to see who they will face in the prelim. The same can be said of the North Queensland Cowboys who overcame Cronulla Sharks in a thrilling qualifying final.

Valentine Holmes booted a golden-point to seal a 32-30 win on Saturday night.

Canberra Raiders pulled off the big surprise when beating the Melbourne Storm 28-20 at AAMI Park and they will now play Parramatta in the semi-finals.

That game will take place at CommBank Stadium in Sydney, and the winners will go on to meet the Cowboys in the preliminary final in Townsville the week after.

The Rabbitohs beat the Roosters on Sunday afternoon and they will now face the Cronulla Sharks in the semi-final.

The winners of that game will travel to take on the Panthers in the other preliminary final in Penrith.

The two semi-finals will be evenly matched and it is hard to predict who will come out on top. But excitement is guaranteed.

AFL: Preliminary final action

Now the two semi-finals are done and dusted we know the make-up of the preliminary finals and we are just one game away from the big dance at the MCG.

The Brisbane Lions caused a big upset when they sent the reigning premiers Melbourne packing on Friday night.

The Lions showed they have what it takes to go all the way this year after they defeated the Demons 92-79 at the MCG and will be looking to cause another boilover in the prelim.

Next stop is a clash with the minor premiers Geelong, again at the MCG. The clash will take place on Friday night with a 19:50 (AEST) bounce.

Elsewhere it was Collingwood that overcame Fremantle 79-59 in the second semi-final on Saturday night.

It is season over for the Dockers, while Collingwood will now go on to face the Sydney Swans at the SCG in the second preliminary final. Bounce is 16:45 (AEST).

Geelong will be the hot fancies to book their place in the grand final, but the Lions cannot be underestimated and have shown they are more than capable of causing an upset.

As for Sydney versus Collingwood, that game is on a knife edge and really could go either way. An exciting couple of games await.

Rugby Union – Wallabies v New Zealand

The Wallabies return to action and it will be interesting to see what side turns up for the showdown with the All Blacks.

Will it be the side capable of beating England and South Africa or the one that got outplayed and beaten by Argentina?

They have been inconsistent to say the least so far in 2022 and need to find some throughout the rest of the year as they ramp up preparations for the Rugby World Cup.

Dave Rennie’s side now face two massive games against the All Blacks. The first one takes place at Marvel Stadium in Melbourne on Thursday evening with a 19:45 (AEST) kick-off.

Australia then head to Eden Park on Saturday 24th September for the re-match.

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