Removing this game from the Sydney-Gold Coast confines and plonking it in the heart of rural NSW, at Scully Park in Tamworth, might make it a minefield for tipsters.
Despite back-to-back wins, is there enough faith out there in the Titans now that they face a second game without the suspended Jarrod Wallace and have to come to terms with Ryan James's season-ending knee injury.
Away from the Cbus Stadium faithful will they be able to keep the mini-run going?
And is it being too brave to tip the Wests Tigers after a 51-6 walloping at the hands of the Eels at the new BankWest Stadium?
Up until that game, on paper the Wests Tigers with their much higher rates of possession across five rounds, meant Michael Maguire's men should have the upper hand.
However, after the humiliation against the Eels, the gap on the NRL ladder between these two now is not as sizeable - 9th and 11th.
Still the Titans hit their straps in round five scoring five tries to beat the Panthers, after showing similar traits with four tries in the round three loss to the Rabbitohs.
The beach boys can play when they put their minds to it.
Wests Tigers: Russell Packer, Luke Garner (concussion) and Michael Chee-Kam (stood down) are out of the side with Ben Matulino and Chris McQueen starting and Paul Momirovski and Elijah Taylor joining the bench. Garner, who was concussed against the Eels, and David Nofoaluma were the two players dropped from the squad 24 hours out from kick-off.
Titans: Jack Stockwell replaces Keegan Hipgrave on the interchange. The loss of Ryan James to a season-ending ACL injury is a massive blow. Kevin Proctor returns after suffering a quad injury in warm-up last week and missing the win over the Knights. Keegan Hipgrave has been named on the bench and Jack Stockwell has been omitted.
Locks Josh Aloiai (Tigers) and Jai Arrow (Titans) have become crucial to momentum through the middle for both sides. Aloiai makes an average 107 metres per game with a tackle efficiency of 93.8%, while Arrow makes 154 metres on average but is just 87.7% in tackles. Both man love to bust the line and have solid post contact metres.
For the Tigers to win
Robbie Farah being fit (missed 70 minutes against the Eels through injury) so he can continue to get out of dummy-half as often, and as quickly, as he did over the first five games. He's had three try assists, four line-break assists and scored three times himself. And when he's not zooming all over the field, he's had seven forced line drop outs to keep the pressure on oppositions.
For the Titans to win
Fullback Michael Gordon is third in the NRL on kick-return metres, so the other members of the back-five, like centres Tyrone Peachey and Brian Kelly, need to be right there with him in support to keep stretching the defence. Gordon ran for 160 metres with two line-breaks in the Titans first win of the year (against the Panthers) two weeks ago. He ran 133 metres in the win over the Knights. He's also kicked 12 goals across those two games.
Brett Kimmorley says
We’re off to Tamworth. The Titans had a good win last weekend. They had some adversity with players ruled out before the game, in the warm up, and then again early on. Maybe for the Titans their blueprint got thrown out the window and they just played some tough footy. Where was this side over the first five weeks? For the Tigers, it’s going to be a tough week for them. I don’t know if Scully Park is going to have the same aura as the opening of Westbank Stadium. Titans by 2
The Wests Tigers are in the top-four for offloads with 68 putting them in the same bracket as the 'kings' of this kind of caper - the Sharks and Warriors. That willingness to chance their hand with second phase play gives the Tigers that unpredictability and excitement. But the Titans might the ones popping the champagne, as this is their 300th premiership game since entering the competition in 2007.
And another thing ...
Luke Brooks is up there with Origin players Damien Cook, James Maloney and Nathan Cleary in engaging the line. He's doing it an average seven times a game. But he's outside the top-20 for line-break assists, while seven other halves are in the top-10. Converting his timing and talents into points will go a long way to keeping the Wests Tigers in the top-eight.