It's one of the most anticipated weeks on the NRL calendar, and the countdown is now on, leading to Game One of the State of Origin series on Wednesday 31st May.

Getting your tips and SuperCoach strategies right during these Origin-affected weeks takes on a whole new level of difficulty as high-performing teams are usually stunted significantly, losing multiple players to represent their state, while struggling clubs stay relatively intact.

For SuperCoach players, remember that this week the scores from your best 13 players will count. Check that you do not have any players in your lineup who have the bye.

Good luck!

* Teams with the Bye in Round 13: Bulldogs, Panthers, Roosters, Sharks, Storm, Titans, Tigers

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Round 13: Tips and SuperCoach Notes

The Dolphins vs St George Illawarra Dragons
Thursday 25th May 7:50pm | Kayo Stadium, Redcliffe

State of Origin Outs: Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow (Dolphins), Tom Gilbert (Dolphins), Ben Hunt (Dragons)

Why the Dolphins will win: The Dragons managed to jag a last-minute two-point win over the Sydney Roosters last round, but readers should be reminded that the Roosters are (currently) putrid. Further, the Dragons have been carried on the back of club stalwart Ben Hunt who is away on Origin duties for this encounter. The Dolphins will enjoy the home-ground advantage in this one, and will have the dynamic Kodi Nikorima filling in at the back.

Why the Dragons will win: St George Illawarra have some handy depth in the halves, and fans will be excited to see the young pairing of Talatau Amone and Jayden Sullivan getting another crack together in first grade. The Dragons also welcome back a number of players, most notably Jack Bird who has been in great form. Under new coach Ryan Carr, the Dragons should still be in that 'interim coach honeymoon' period, and can surprise the Dolphins in Redcliffe.

Fansided tip: Dolphins by 6

SuperCoach Notes: Kodi Nikorima ($482K) will likely play a few games at fullback if Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow holds down his Origin spot, and this should result in some more involvement. Valynce Te Whare ($200K) has been named on the interchange but could be a late starter. In his only game so far, he smashed out a 94. Zac Lomax returned to his preferred edge last week and played much better than his previous 2023 form. He also looked better with the goal-kicking. Traditionally somewhat of a SuperCoach gun, he could be a solid pickup at $530K and he's a POD at 1.1%.

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Parramatta Eels vs North Queensland Cowboys
Friday 26th May 8:00pm | Commbank Stadium Sydney

State of Origin Outs: Junior Paulo (Eels), Valentine Holmes (Cowboys), Murray Taulagi (Cowboys), Reuben Cotter (Cowboys), Tom Dearden (Cowboys)

Why the Eels will win: With four players on Origin duties, the Cowboys are severely depleted. Add in the Commbank Stadium on a cold night factor and North Queensland will be sorely out of depth. And the form guide couldn't be further apart: The Eels are coming off an impressive win over the very-much in-form South Sydney, while the Cowboys were simply abysmal in their shellacking at the hands of the (then) last-placed Tigers.

Why the Cowboys will win: If we put last week aside, and yes, it's very hard to do so, the Cowboys had just comprehensively defeated the Roosters and Dragons, while the Eels had come off losses to the Titans and Raiders. Simply put, last week the Cowboys were going into their match with some form, while the Eels were floundering. Both teams are hot and cold to say the least, and the Cowboys were cold last week. This week, the Eels should beware - the Northerners could be red hot.

Fansided tip: Eels by 14

SuperCoach notes: Mitchell Moses is in good form and for an elite POD halfback, $758K isn't a bank-breaker. His 3-round average is 98. With the Eels facing an ongoing forwards shortage, J'Maine Hopgood is once again a long-term hold. Joe Ofahengaue ($420K) plays his first game for Parra and was averaging a PPM1.1 in a pretty average team at Wests. For the Cowboys, Luciano Leilua ($551K) looked very busy and involved considering he hadn't played a match for the better part of a year. Zac Laybutt and Robert Derby will get a taste of first grade in the backline.

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New Zealand Warriors vs Brisbane Broncos
Saturday 27th May 5:30pm | McLean Park, Napier (New Zealand)

State of Origin Outs: Reece Walsh (Broncos), Selwyn Cobbo (Broncos), Tom Flegler (Broncos), Patrick Carrigan (Broncos), Payne Haas (Broncos)

Why the Warriors will win: Dylan Walker and Wayde Egan are big outs, but the talented Luke Metcalf returns, while Freddy Lussick is more than adequate as a replacement hooker. Coming off the bye, with the home ground advantage and against a Brisbane side that's not only missing a suite of stars but that has been on the decline in recent weeks, the Warriors will go into this match as morals.

Why the Broncos will win: A large chunk of the Brisbane spine remains, and with Adam Reynolds at the helm, they're still a difficult side to overcome. Losing Carrigan and Haas is a huge blow, but there's still some grunt up front with Kurt Capewell, Jordan Riki, Corey Jensen and Kobe Hetherington all looking to fill the void. Tristan Sailor (son of Wendell) at fullback showed glimpses of brilliance in his time at the Dragons, so he will be keen to put his best foot forward.

Fansided tip: Warriors by 18

SuperCoach notes: Luke Metcalf ($250K) plays his first match of 2023 after looking sharp in the pre-seasons trials. If he puts in an irresistible performance, he could relegate Dylan Walker to the utility role at 14.

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South Sydney Rabbitohs vs Canberra Raiders
Saturday 27th May 7:35pm | Accor Stadium, Sydney

State of Origin Outs: Jai Arrow (Rabbitohs), Latrell Mitchell (Rabbitohs), Cameron Murray (Rabbitohs), Hudson Young (Raiders)

Why the Rabbitohs will win: With Damien Cook missing out on Origin selection, look for him to want to show Brad Fittler that it was a mistake to overlook him. The Rabbitohs also find themselves in possession of Campbell Graham after NSW decided not to play him in Game 1 due to an inability to train. Souths are still the form team of the competition despite a blip against the Eels last round, and while their outs are considerable, they still retain the majority of their unit.

Why the Raiders will win: The Raiders also endured a loss last round, but prior to that were on a six-match winning streak. They will want to bounce back to form quickly and have only lost one player to the Origin arena. Latrell Mitchell and Cameron Murray are particularly big X-factor losses for the Bunnies.

Fansided tip: Rabbitohs by 8

SuperCoach notes: Elliott Whitehead ($464K) has been a force for the Green Machine over the past few weeks and managed an impressive 103 (1.3PPM) in an 80 minute performance - in a side that was spanked by the Sea Eagles. In the absence of Hudson Young, Whitehead could be a solid 2RF option. Nick Cotric has found himself on the interchange, replaced on the wing by Albert Hopoate. This will be a substantial drop in his stocks.

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Newcastle Knights vs Manly Sea Eagles
Sunday 28th May 4:05pm | McDonald Jones Stadium, Newcastle

State of Origin Outs: Tyson Frizell (Knights), Daly Cherry-Evans (Sea Eagles), Tom Trbojevic (Sea Eagles)

Why the Knights will win: The Sea Eagles lose their two best players to Origin and while they still enjoy a range of strike players across the paddock, the majority of creativity and structure comes from DCE and Turbo. Further, brothers Ben and Jake Trbojevic are missing through injury. Kalyn Ponga and Dane Gagai will be seething after being overlooked for Origin, despite consistently being two of Queensland's best and most consistent players. They will be fired up for a big one in front of home fans. Lachlan Miller has been demoted to bench-utility to make way for Ponga's return to fullback, and this could only enhance his strike value.

Why the Sea Eagles will win: Manly ended the Raiders' winning streak last week at GIO Stadium in Canberra, and looked terrific doing so. While they lose some big names, they will have taken confidence from a solid showing by Josh Schuster, and they have surprisingly retained Haumole Olakau'atu for the clash who are game-breakers on their day.

Fansided tip: Knights by 14

SuperCoach notes: The 'Ponga at 6' experiment is once again done and dusted for the year, and he's moving back to fullback which will improve his stocks, but lower those of Lachlan Miller, who, for the most part of the season has been brilliant. Haumole Olakau'atu ($602K) has dropped a fair way in price and may not see a sky-blue jersey this year, pending series results. He's an 80 minute player who averages 0.8PPM and can find the try line. His ownership is a surprisingly low 6.5%.

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Queensland Maroons vs NSW Blues
Wednesday 31st May 8:05pm | Adelaide Oval, Adelaide

Why the Maroons will win: Once again, NSW looks to have the sharper side on paper but there have been serious form considerations in key positions. James Tedesco, Tom Trbojevic, Brian To'o, Api Koroisau and Junior Paulo have all racked up below-par performances across the season.

Jake Trbojevic's staunch defense and leadership will be missed, and his replacement Tevita Pangai Junior will be taunted constantly as Queensland look to squeeze errors and penalties out of him. Many will suggest that Reece Walsh got lucky to be selected in front of Ponga, but he's been the form fullback of the competition hands-down, and his spark will be balanced by the supreme game management of Daly Cherry-Evans, Ben Hunt, Cameron Munster and Harry Grant.

Why the Blues will win: NSW enjoys a neutral-ground dominance, winning 66% of matches outside of NSW/QLD, and they enjoy a forward pack that brings experience, muscle and ball-play. Payne Haas is the leading Dally-M contender, while Isaah Yeo, TPJ, Junior Paulo and Cameron Murray all have slick hands.

The Panther-connection is once again established, and club combinations cannot be understated. Luai, Cleary, Koroisau, Yeo, Martin and To'o can perform together blindfolded. Finally, there are some serious backline inadequacies for the Maroons in Cobbo, Tabuai-Fidow and Taulagi, and Valentine Holmes was toweled up against the Tigers in his last start. Brian To'o, Latrell Mitchell, Tom Trbojevic and Josh Addo-Carr will be licking their lips.

Fansided tip: NSW by 7

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