Aaron Woods and Campbell Graham were interviewed on the Allegiant Stadium turf as a host of NRL stars made the trip to promote the…
Several stars will make timely returns to the NRL in Round 20 with finals berths on the line in the post-Origin run into the playoffs.
Sydney Roosters skipper James Tedesco won’t back up from State of Origin against Melbourne on Saturday night with coach Trent Robinson saying he will be rested. The NSW captain had a starring role in his side’s win over Queensland in the third and final game of the series on Wednesday night, but will sit out the SCG clash.
Robinson said that Joey Manu will start at fullback in place of Tedesco, as the Roosters look to reverse a 28-8 loss to the Storm in round six. Maroons prop Lindsay Collins will back up from Origin.
Origin III was relatively injury free with Blues winger Josh Addo-Carr, who was replaced near full-time with a hamstring strain, the only apparent problem although coach Brad Fittler said it was not serious.
He will miss the Bulldogs’ clash with the Broncos, as will Brisbane winger Corey Oates, who suffered a knee injury at training and will miss what was to have been his 200th NRL game for the club on Saturday at Belmore Sports Ground.
“We lost a winger at training yesterday,” coach Kevin Walters told SEN Radio on Thursday morning. “Corey Oates has injured his knee. He’s off to see the specialist today.”
Bulldogs forward Viliame Kikau had been pushing for a comeback from his four-month pectoral layoff but the club will wait another week.
Panthers halfback Nathan Cleary is a strong chance to make a return from his hamstring tear, Wests Tigers hooker Api Koroisau has been named to start despite not being due back for a few more weeks with his broken jaw while Roosters hooker Brandon Smith will be back in the NRL after lining up in the NSW Cup on the weekend following six weeks out with a broken thumb.
Penrith coach Ivan Cleary said on Wednesday that he is confident his son Nathan will tick the boxes in three more sessions this week to overcome a hamstring injury and feature in Sunday’s NRL clash with the Dolphins.
Cleary was named in the No.24 jersey among the extended reserves with Jack Cogger in the halves and Dolphins assistant coach Kristian Woolf said his name on an extended bench had not escaped his notice. “I think they have named him for a purpose,” he said. “I’d expect that he is probably close and they’ve put him in there because he is more than likely going to play.”
The Roosters will also be boosted by Jake Turpin, Billy Smith, Egan Butcher and Joseph Suaalii returning – after going through the concussion protocols in the bye week – to face the Storm at the SCG on Saturday night in a crucial clash for Trent Robinson’s 13th-placed team.
Broncos veteran Kurt Capewell (thigh) is right for their clash with Canterbury but NSW prop Payne Haas will need another week out with his hamstring strain.
Bulldogs forward Ryan Sutton is out this round after he was sent to hospital for scans on his neck after a high shot from Taane Milne in the narrow win over Souths. Thankfully for Sutton, who underwent assessment on Saturday night, he was cleared of a neck fracture as well as concussion.
Milne was charged with a careless high tackle but avoided a two-match ban by accepting a $3000 fine.
Parramatta’s Shaun Lane was ($750 for tripping) and Tigers centre Starford To’a ($750 for a dangerous throw) were also charged.
Knights: 1. Kalyn Ponga 2. Dominic Young 3. Dane Gagai 4. Bradman Best 5. Greg Marzhew 6. Tyson Gamble 7. Jackson Hastings 8. Daniel Saifiti 9. Phoenix Crossland 10. Leo Thompson 11. Tyson Frizell 12. Lachlan Fitzgibbon 13. Adam Elliott 14. Kurt Mann 15. Jacob Saifiti 16. Jack Hetherington 17. Mathew Croker 18. Dylan Lucas 19. Enari Tuala 20. Brodie Jones 21. Hymel Hunt 22. Adam Clune
After a week off with the bye, centre Dane Gagai (foot) will return while fellow outside back Hymel Hunt (knee) is also in contention for a recall after being listed in the reserves. Bradman Best and Jacob Saifiti are on Blues duty.
Tigers: 1. Jahream Bula 2. Asu Kepaoa 3. Starford To’a 4. Tommy Talau 5. Junior Tupou 6. Will Smith 7. Brandon Wakeham 8. Stefano Utoikamanu 9. Apisai Koroisau 10. David Klemmer 11. Isaiah Papali’i 12. John Bateman 13. Fonua Pole 14. Jake Simpkin 15. Shawn Blore 16. Alex Twal 17. Alex Seyfarth 18. Daine Laurie 19. Aistasi James 20. Tallyn Da Silva 21. Justin Matamua 22. Brent Naden
Alex Twal has served a one-game ban for dangerous contact while Brent Naden could return from a minor shoulder injury after being named in the reserves.
Api Koroisau (jaw) is set to make an early comeback but Luke Brooks (hamstring) is still a couple of weeks away.
Bulldogs: 1. Jake Averillo 2. Blake Wilson 3. Braidon Burns 4. Jacob Kiraz
5. Josh Addo-Carr 6. Matt Burton 7. Toby Sexton 8. Max King 9. Reed Mahoney 10. Raymond Faitala-Mariner 11. Jackson Topine 12. Jacob Preston 13. Corey Waddell 14. Kyle Flanagan 15. Kurtis Morrin 16. Tevita Pangai jnr 17. Jayden Okunbor 19. Fa’amanu Brown 20. Jeral Skelton 21. Reece Hoffman 22. Paul Alamoti 23. Chris Patolo
English forward Ryan Sutton’s neck injury mean he is out for the short term while the Dogs have shelved plans for Viliame Kikau to suit up for his first match since Round 4 with the Fijian forward closing in on a return from his torn pec.
Josh Addo-Carr (hamstring) is out after Origin III. Cameron Ciraldo said on Friday morning that the club was awaiting scan results to see how long he will be out.
Broncos: 1. Tristan Sailor
2. Corey Oates 16. Jesse Arthars 3. Kotoni Staggs 4. Herbie Farnworth 5. Selwyn Cobbo 6. Ezra Mam 7. Adam Reynolds 8. Keenan Palasia 9. Billy Walters 10. Corey Jensen 11. Kurt Capewell 12. Brendan Piakura 13. Kobe Hetherington 14. Tyson Smoothy 15. Xavier Willison 17. Martin Taupau 18. Deine Mariner 19. Patrick Carrigan 20. Jock Madden 21. Delouise Hoeter 22. Jordan Pereira
Payne Haas (hamstring) and Tom Flegler (foot) are a couple of weeks away but Kurt Capewell (thigh) will play after a month out with Kevin Walters waiting for Origin to see who is available for the rare trip to Belmore. Pat Carrigan was named in the reserves so he may get a rest after his Maroons outing.
Corey Oates has been ruled out due to a knee injury at training.
Sea Eagles: 1. Reuben Garrick 2. Jason Saab 3. Brad Parker 4. Tolutau Koula 5. Christian Tuipulotu 6. Josh Schuster 7. Daly Cherry-Evans 8. Taniela Paseka 9. Lachlan Croker 10. Toafofoa Sipley 11. Haumole Olakau’atu 12. Kelma Tuilagi 13. Jake Trbojevic 14. Dean Matterson 15. Aaron Woods 16. Ethan Bullemor 17. Josh Aloiai 18. Sean Keppie 19. Morgan Harper 20. Ray Tuaimalo-Vaega 21. Jakob Arthur 22. Gordon Chan Kum Tong
Anthony Seibold will monitor Jake Trbojevic and Daly Cherry-Evans after Origin before deciding whether they’ll back up. Second-rower Dean Matterson is set to make his NRL debut from the bench.
Cowboys: 1. Scott Drinkwater 2. Semi Valemei 3. Valentine Holmes 4. Peta Hiku 5. Murray Taulagi 6. Tom Dearden 7. Chad Townsend 8. Jordan McLean 9. Reece Robson 10. Coen Hess 11. Luciano Leilua 12. Jeremiah Nanai 13. Reuben Cotter 14. Jake Granville 15. Griffin Neame 16. Jason Taumalolo 17. Kulikefu Finefeuiaki 18. Kyle Feldt 19. Jamayne Taunoa-Brown 20. Zac Laybutt 21. Sam McIntyre 22. Riley Price 23. Ben Hampton 24. Brendan Elliot
Heilum Luke is a fortnight away from a return after his facial fracture with Origin reps Valentine Holmes, Reuben Cotter, Jeremiah Nanai, Reece Robson and Murray Taulagi possibly getting a rest this weekend.
1. James Tedesco 4. Joseph Manu 2. Daniel Tupou 3. Billy Smith 18. Drew Hutchison 5. Joseph Suaalii 6. Luke Keary 7. Sandon Smith 8. Jared Waerea-Hargreaves 9. Jake Turpin 10. Lindsay Collins 11. Victor Radley 12. Nat Butcher 13. Nathan Brown 14. Brandon Smith 15. Egan Butcher 16. Siua Wong 17. Naufahu Whyte 19. Terrell May 20. Corey Allan 21. Fetalaiga Pauga 22. Dylan Napa
Brandon Smith will suit up after making a successful return from a broken thumb in NSW Cup last weekend while the NRL side had the bye.
Jake Turpin, Billy Smith, Egan Butcher and Joseph Suaalii (concussion protocols) are right to face the Storm at the SCG on Saturday night in a crucial clash for Trent Robinson’s 13th-placed team.
Storm: 1. Nick Meaney 2. William Warbrick 3. Reimis Smith 4. Justin Olam 5. Xavier Coates 6. Cameron Munster 7. Jahrome Hughes 8. Tui Kamikamica 9. Harry Grant 10. Christian Welch 11. Trent Loiero 12. Nelson Asofa-Solomona 13. Josh King 14. Tyran Wishart 15. Tom Eisenhuth 16. Tariq Sims 17. Bronson Garlick 18. Grant Anderson 19. Alec MacDonald 20. Jayden Nikorima 21. Marion Seve 22. Chris Lewis 23. George Jennings
Winger Will Warbrick (conussion) should be good to go after Melbourne’s bye week while prop Aaron Pene (ankle) is out.
Warriors: 1. Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad 2. Dallin Watene-Zelezniak 3. Rocco Berry 4. Adam Pompey 5. Marcelo Montoya 6. Luke Metcalf 7. Shaun Johnson 8. Addin Fonua-Blake 9. Wayde Egan 10. Mitchell Barnett 11. Jackson Ford 12. Josh Curran 13. Tohu Harris 14. Freddy Lussick 15. Bayley Sironen 16. Tom Ale 17. Dylan Walker 18. Kalani Going 20. Ronald Volkman 21. Taine Tuaupiki 22. Zyon Maiu’u 23. Viliami Vailea
Back-rower Josh Curran is available for selection after he has served a two-match suspension for an off-season assault against a teenager on the NSW North Coast.
Dylan Walker (arm) was a casualty in his 200th game on Saturday but the injury is not considered serious.
Sharks: 1. Will Kennedy 2. Sione Katoa 3. Jesse Ramien 4. Siosifa Talakai 5. Ronaldo Mulitalo 6. Matt Moylan 7. Nicho Hynes 8. Oregon Kaufusi 9. Blayke Brailey 10. Toby Rudolf 11. Briton Nikora 12. Teig Wilton 13. Cameron McInnes 14. Wade Graham 15. Thomas Hazelton 16. Jack Williams 17. Jesse Colquhoun 18. Connor Tracey 19. Kayal Iro 20. Braden Hamlin-Uele 21. Braydon Trindall 22. Tuku Hau Tapuha
Dale Finucane has one more match to serve on his two-game ban while fellow middle forward Braden Hamlin-Uele is in doubt with a rib problem which forced him out of last Thursday’s 36-12 triumph over Wests.
Dolphins: 1. Kodi Nikorima 2. Jamayne Isaako 3. Euan Aitken 4. Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow 5. Tesi Niu 6. Isaiya Katoa 7. Sean O’Sullivan 8. Jesse Bromwich 9. Harrison Graham 10. Kenny Bromwich 11. Felise Kaufusi 12. Connelly Lemuelu 13. Ray Stone 14. Herman Ese’ese 15. Mark Nicholls 16. Anthony Milford 17. Jarrod Wallace 18. Josh Kerr 19. Valynce Te Whare 20. Poasa Faamausili 21. Brenko Lee 22. Kurt Donoghoe
Jarrod Wallace was charged with a careless high tackle in his first game back from a three-match ban in the win over Gold Coast but the veteran prop has only been fined $1800 this time.
Second-rower Felise Kaufusi (head knock) will return this weekend. Jeremy Marshall-King is still out with his shoulder problem so Harrison Graham stays at hooker.
Anthony Milford trained with the main squad at No.6 on Wednesday and it appears likely he will start against the Panthers at Kayo Stadium on Sunday with regular five-eighth Isaiya Katoa to revert to the bench and share the hooking role.
Panthers: 1. Dylan Edwards 2. Sunia Turuva 3. Izack Tago 4. Stephen Crichton 5. Brian To’o 6. Jarome Luai 7. Jack Cogger 8. Moses Leota 9. Mitch Kenny 10. James Fisher-Harris 11. Scott Sorensen 12. Liam Martin 13. Isaah Yeo 14. Soni Luke 15. Lindsay Smith 16. Spencer Leniu 17. Jaeman Salmon 18. Zac Hosking 19. Matt Eisenhuth 20. Luke Garner 21. Tyrone Peachey 22. Thomas Jenkins 23. Jesse Maclean 24. Nathan Cleary
Brian To’o, Liam Martin, Stephen Crichton and Isaah Yeo will possibly be rested after Origin midweek.
Nathan Cleary (hamstring) could be a major in for the premiers while Scott Sorensen (neck) is also another maybe.
Cleary was named in the No.24 jersey among the extended reserves with Jack Cogger in the halves and a decision on the co-captain will be made later in the week.
Eels: 1. Clint Gutherson 2. Maika Sivo 3. Viliami Penisini 4. Bailey Simonsson 5. Sean Russell 6. Daejarn Asi 7. Mitchell Moses 8. Reagan Campbell-Gillard 9. Brendan Hands 10. Junior Paulo 11. Shaun Lane 12. Bryce Cartwright 13. J’maine Hopgood 14. Luca Moretti 15. Joe Ofahengaue 16. Andrew Davey 17. Ryan Matterson 18. Ofahiki Ogden 19. Makahesi Makatoa 20. Waqa Blake 21. Matt Doorey 22. Haze Dunster 23. Isaac Lumelume
Ryan Matterson will return to the pack via the bench as long as Mitchell Moses gets through Origin duty to partner Daejarn Asi in the halves. Isaac Lumelume has been squeezed out with Clint Gutherson coming back from the Blues to fullback and Sean Russell returning to the wing. Ofahiki Ogden will lose his starting spot as long as Reagan Campbell-Gillard gets through Wednesday night’s NSW return unscathed.
Shaun Lane was fined $750 for tripping in the loss to the Warriors.
Titans: 1. AJ Brimson 2. Alofiana Khan-Pereira 3. Brian Kelly 4. Aaron Schoupp 5. Phillip Sami 6. Kieran Foran 7. Tanah Boyd 8. Moeaki Fotuaika 9. Sam Verrills 10. Tino Fa’asuamaleaui 11. David Fifita 12. Klese Haas 13. Isaac Liu 14. Jayden Campbell 15. Chris Randall 16. Erin Clark 17. Jojo Fifita 18. Iszac Fa’asumaleaui 19. Jacob Alick 20. Keano Kini 21. Kruise Leeming 22. Ken Maumalo 23. Tony Francis 24. Thomas Mikaele
AJ Brimson, Moeaki Fotuaika, Tino Fa’asuamaleaui and David Fifita are maybes due to Origin commitments. Joe Stimson (concussion) and Jaimin Jolliffe (hand) are out of the pack this round.