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NRL Round 1 Predicted Teams: Eels star faces ban, Gilbert gone for year, Hess hobbled, Dragons get double boost

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26th February, 2024
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Parramatta look set to be without Maika Sivo to start the NRL season, with the Eels winger facing a four-game ban.

The Fijian flyer was hit with a grade-two careless high-tackle charge following their trial win over the Gold Coast Titans on Sunday.

Owing to his prior misdemeanours, the challenge on AJ Brimson means Sivo will be sidelined for three matches with an early guilty plea.

Parramatta are deliberating whether to challenge the charge against Sivo and will make a decision by noon on Tuesday. Should he winger opt to fight it at the judiciary and lose he will be handed an additional one-game suspension.

Canberra youngster Ethan Strange will be clear to play in round one, escaping with a $1000 fine for a dangerous throw on North Queensland prop Tom Mikaele.

The Dolphins have confirmed a season-ending knee injury for forward Tom Gilbert from the trial loss to the Warriors in Auckland on Saturday with scans showing a rupture of the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in his right knee.

The 23-year-old Queensland forward was playing his second trial after recovering from shoulder surgery for an injury that kept him out of action for more than half of last season.

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“Tom is now effectively out for the 2024 season because of this injury, which generally requires a nine to twelve month rehab period,” Dolphins head of performance Jeremy Hickmans said. “On a positive note, he has already shown us how dedicated he is and that he is willing to go to all lengths through a long rehabilitation with his comeback from last year’s shoulder surgery.

“I have no doubt he will replicate those efforts and be back ready to go for the 2025 season.”

Cowboys forward Coen Hess also faces a nervous wait to determine the extent of the damage to the knee injury he suffered in Sunday’s trial win over Canberra.

Sharks half Nicho Hynes (thigh) should be fine for Round 1 while St George Illawarra received good news on forwards Jacob Liddle and Blake Lawrie, who failed to finish their trial win over Wests Tigers. Both are aiming to play round one against Gold Coast after Lawrie suffered rib cartilage damage and Liddle picked up a low-grade hamstring injury.

Souths skipper Cameron Murray and Roosters star Joey Manu are joining their teams in Las Vegas late after each stayed in Sydney to be with their wife to attended the birth of their child while Rabbitohs five-eighth Cody Walker is confident of beating a calf complaint in time for kick-off.

Broncos forward Brendan Piakura is a chance to play despite a knee injury from week one of the trials.

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Team by team, here’s how each side is likely to line up for Round 1. 

Round 1 predicted teams

Manly vs South Sydney at Allegiant Stadium, Las Vegas: 1.30pm, Sunday March 1

Odds: Sea Eagles $2.25, Rabbitohs $1.65 – odds via PlayUp

Sea Eagles: Josh Schuster was ruled out of Manly’s second trial and missed the plane for the opening round in Las Vegas after straining a calf muscle on top of ongoing fitness issues over the summer. Ben Trbojevic is now favourite to start in the second row.

Luke Brooks is certain to partner Daly Cherry-Evans in the halves after an off-season switch from the Wests Tigers.

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Toff Sipley is out suspended for a crusher tackle until Round 3 which is likely to open the door for Nathan Brown to claim a spot in the 17, after he was handed a lifeline by the Sea Eagles in the off-season.

Round 1 predicted team

1 Tom Trbojevic
2 Jason Saab
3 Reuben Garrick
4 Tolu Koula
5 Jaxson Paulo
6 Luke Brooks
7 Daly Cherry-Evans
8 Taniela Paseka
9 Lachlan Croker
10 Josh Aloiai
11 Haumole Olakau’atu
12 Ben Trbojevic
13 Jake Trbojevic
Interchange
14 Jake Arthur
15 Corey Waddell
16 Ethan Bullemor
17 Nathan Brown

Other squad members: Matt Lodge (injured), Brad Parker, Josh Schuster, Gordon Chan Kum Tong, Karl Lawton, Tommy Talau, Ray Vaega, Toff Sipley, Zac Fulton, Ben Condon, Aaron Woods.

Rabbitohs: Cody Walker was forced to pull out of the Indigenous All Stars game in Townsville with a calf injury from training but is confident of beating the clock to line up for the season opener in Las Vegas.

Jack Wighton is out suspended and with Campbell Graham facing six months out with a sternum injury, Isaiah Tass and Jacob Gagai are set to start at centre with Taane Milne on the right wing after Tyrone Munro damaged his collarbone at training.

Round 1 predicted team

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1 Latrell Mitchell
2 Alex Johnston
3 Isaiah Tass
4 Jacob Gagai
5 Taane Milne
6 Cody Walker
7 Lachlan Ilias
8 Tevita Tatola
9 Damien Cook
10 Tom Burgess
11 Keaon Koloamatangi
12 Jai Arrow
13 Cameron Murray
Interchange
14 Siliva Havili
15 Sean Keppie
16 Davvy Moale
17 Tallis Duncan

Other squad members: Jack Wighton (suspended), Tyrone Munro, Campbell Graham (injured), Michael Chee-Kam, Shaq Mitchell, Jacob Host, Dean Hawkins, Peter Mamouzelos, Ben Lovett, Jye Gray, Daniel Suluka-Fifita, Leon Te Hau, Izaac Thompson, Braidon Burns.

Roosters vs Brisbane at Allegiant Stadium, Las Vegas: 3.30pm, Sunday March 1

Odds: Broncos $1.65, Roosters $2.20 – odds via PlayUp

Broncos: Back-rower Brendan Piakura is in doubt for the NRL club’s Las Vegas season opener after the Bronco suffered a knee injury in the club’s trial win over North Queensland. Scans confirmed a low-grade medial cruciate ligament strain for Piakura, who was one of the Broncos’ best in their opening trial win in Mackay.

Piakura has been earmarked to replace Kurt Capewell in the starting second row after the veteran gained an early release to take up a three-year Warriors deal.

Jordan Riki will likely be the other starting back-rower in Las Vegas, while coach Kevin Walters could shift Pat Carrigan or Kobe Hetherington to an edge if Piakura doesn’t feature.

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Payne Haas has avoided a charge for his swinging arm on on North Queensland bench hooker Kyle Schneider in their trial match.

Round 1 predicted team

1 Reece Walsh
2 Deine Mariner
3 Kotoni Staggs
4 Selwyn Cobbo
5 Jesse Arthars
6 Ezra Mam
7 Adam Reynolds
8 Payne Haas
9 Billy Walters
10 Pat Carrigan
11 Brendan Piakura
12 Jordan Riki
13 Kobe Hetherington
Interchange
14 Tyson Smoothy
15 Martin Taupau
16 Fletcher Baker
17 Corey Jensen

Other squad members: Jock Madden, Tristan Sailor, Cory Paix, Blake Mozer, Jordan Pereira, Corey Oates, Delouise Hoeter, Ben Te Kura, Jaiyden Hunt, Xavier Willison

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - OCTOBER 01: Ezra Mam of the Broncos celebrates with team mates after scoring a try during the 2023 NRL Grand Final match between Penrith Panthers and Brisbane Broncos at Accor Stadium on October 01, 2023 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Bradley Kanaris/Getty Images)

Ezra Mam celebrates with teammates after scoring in the GF. (Photo by Bradley Kanaris/Getty Images)

Roosters: Dominic Young’s out for Round 1 due to a neck injury suffered in the trial win over Manly.

That helps alleviate a selection headache for Trent Robinson with Joseph Suaalii to switch back from centre to the wing with the reliable Billy Smith to start at centre. 

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Joey Manu’s arrival in Las Vegas has been delayed due to staying in Sydney for the birth of his first child.

Veteran prop Jared Waerea-Hargreaves is unavailable for Vegas due to his seven-game ban carrying over from last season.

Round 1 predicted team

1 James Tedesco
2 Daniel Tupou
3 Joseph Manu
4 Billy Smith
5 Joseph Suaalii
6 Luke Keary
7 Sam Walker
8 Spencer Leniu
9 Brandon Smith
10 Lindsay Collins
11 Sitili Tupouniua
12 Nat Butcher
13 Victor Radley
Interchange
14 Connor Watson
15 Siua Wong
16 Angus Crichton
17 Terrell May

Other squad members: Jared Waerea-Hargreaves (suspended), Dominic Young (injured), Egan Butcher, Sandon Smith, Tyler Moriarty, Junior Pauga, Robert Toia, Naufahu Whyte, Zach Dockar-Clay. 

Newcastle vs Canberra at McDonald Jones Stadium: 8pm, Thursday March 7

Odds: Knights $1.40, Raiders $3 – odds via PlayUp

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Knights: Jayden Brailey missed the opening trial with a minor hamstring complaint as he makes a comeback from another serious knee injury and was rested on the weekend.

Knights coach Adam O’Brien is going into the season with a more settled squad than recent years but needs to decide early whether he will stick with the halves which took his team to the finals in Tyson Gamble and Jackson Hastings or revamp his playmakers with fresh blood in English recruit Will Pryce or Jack Cogger. 

Dominic Young’s departure to the Roosters leaves a big hole on the flank – his spot is likely to go to experienced campaigner Enari Tuala although Tom Jenkins scored five tries in his six appearances for Penrith so he could be the better long-term candidate.

Cogger was strong in his Knights return off the bench in the trial win over Cronulla. Young centre Krystian Mapapalangi suffered a concussion against the Sharks and will likely sit out the Storm trial in Fiji this weekend.

Round 1 predicted team

1 Kalyn Ponga
2 Enari Tuala
3 Dane Gagai
4 Bradman Best
5 Greg Marzhew
6 Tyson Gamble
7 Jackson Hastings
8 Daniel Saifiti
9 Jayden Brailey
10 Jacob Saifiti
11 Tyson Frizell
12 Kai Pearce-Paul
13 Adam Elliott
Interchange
14 Phoenix Crossland
15 Jed Cartwright
16 Jack Hetherington
17 Leo Thompson

Other squad members: Jack Cogger, David Armstrong, Dylan Lucas, Riley Jones, Paul Bryan, Myles Martin, Mathew Croker, Will Pryce, Thomas Jenkins, Ryan Rivett, Krystian Mapapalangi, Brodie Jones. 

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CANBERRA, AUSTRALIA - JULY 29: Kalyn Ponga of the Knights in action during the round 22 NRL match between Canberra Raiders and Newcastle Knights at GIO Stadium on July 29, 2023 in Canberra, Australia. (Photo by Mark Nolan/Getty Images)

(Photo by Mark Nolan/Getty Images)

Raiders: Jack Wighton has departed after holding a mortgage on this team’s No.6 jersey for a long time. Jarrod Croker has retired and Corey Harawira-Naera’s unlikely to suit up at NRL level this season after his on-field seizure last year.

Rising star Ethan Strange and Manly recruit Kaeo Weekes are set to fight out Wighton’s old five-eighth spot. Both had their moments in Sunday’s trial loss to the Cowboys.

Zac Woolford (concussion) should be right for Round 1.

Round 1 predicted team

1 Jordan Rapana
2 Xavier Savage
3 James Schiller
4 Matt Timoko
5 Albert Hopoate
6 Ethan Strange
7 Jamal Fogarty
8 Josh Papalii
9 Zac Woolford
10 Joseph Tapine
11 Hudson Young
12 Elliott Whitehead
13 Emre Guler
Interchange
14 Tom Starling
15 Morgan Smithies
16 Pasami Saulo
17 Ata Mariota

Other squad members: Seb Kris, Corey Horsburgh (suspended), Nick Cotric, Trey Mooney, Danny Levi, Kaeo Weekes, Chevy Stewart, Peter Hola, Hohepa Puru, Simi Sasagi, Corey Harawira-Naera

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NZ Warriors vs Cronulla at Go Media Stadium: 6pm, Friday March 8

Odds: Warriors $1.55, Sharks $2.45 – odds via PlayUp

Warriors: Roger Tuivasa-Sheck has slotted in well at centre in the pre-season and halfback Shaun Johnson made a return from a calf injury.

Kurt Capewell has crossed the ditch to add starch to the pack while utility back Chanel Harris-Tavita is a real Swiss Army knife of a player who won’t walk into the first 13 but adds experience and depth to multiple positions.

Uncapped Warriors rookie Zyon Maiu’u was sent off for his high tackle that floored Wests Tigers centre Declan Casey and copped a four-game ban with a guilty plea.

Round 1 predicted team

1 Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad
2 Marcelo Montoya
3 Roger Tuisvasa-Sheck
4 Rocco Berry
5 Dallin Watene-Zelezniak
6 Luke Metcalf
7 Shaun Johnson
8 Addin Fonua-Blake
9 Wayde Egan
10 Bunty Afoa
11 Kurt Capewell
12 Marata Niukore
13 Tohu Harris
Interchange
14 Chanel Harris-Tavita
15 Jackson Ford
16 Dylan Walker
17 Tom Ale

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Other squad members: Adam Pompey, Jazz Tevaga, Ali Leiataua, Demetric Sifakula, Edward Kosi, Freddy Lussick, Jacob Laban, Te Maire Martin, Mitch Barnett, Zyon Maiu’u, Taine Tuaupiki

Roger Tuivasa-Sheck

Roger Tuivasa-Sheck (Photo by Tony Feder/Getty Images)

Sharks: Braydon Trindall showed the benefits from having a full summer to work on his playmaking combination with Hynes in his player of the match performance for the Indigenous All Stars.

Hynes was rested for last Friday’s win over Canterbury with a thigh problem but will be right for Round 1.

Round 1 predicted team

1 Will Kennedy
2 Sione Katoa
3 Jesse Ramien
4 Siosifa Talakai
5 Ronaldo Mulitalo
6 Braydon Trindall
7 Nicho Hynes
8 Braden Hamlin-Uele
9 Blayke Brailey
10 Toby Rudolf
11 Briton Nikora
12 Teig Wilton
13 Dale Finucane
Interchange
14 Cameron McInnes
15 Royce Hunt
16 Jack Williams
17 Oregon Kaufusi

Other squad members: Daniel Atkinson, Jayden Berrell, Kade Dykes, Tom Hazelton, Siteni Taukamo, Sam Stonestreet, Niwhai Puru, Michael Gabrael, Kayal Iro, Jesse Colquhoun, Billy Burns.

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BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA - AUGUST 31: Ryan Papenhuyzen of the Storm passes the ball during the round 27 NRL match between the Brisbane Broncos and Melbourne Storm at Suncorp Stadium on August 31, 2023 in Brisbane, Australia. (Photo by Bradley Kanaris/Getty Images)

Ryan Papenhuyzen. (Photo by Bradley Kanaris/Getty Images)

Melbourne vs Penrith at AAMI Park: 8.05pm, Friday March 8

Odds: Storm $2.15, Panthers $1.70 – odds via PlayUp

Storm: Ryan Papenhuyzen is pushing hard to play in Round 1 with impressive trial form but coach Craig Bellamy may be more cautious with the fullback in his attempt to return from a broken leg.

When Papi’s fit, Nick Meaney is set to switch to centre to replace Justin Olam. 

Ex-Tigers forward Shawn Blore has bolstered the pack as part of the swap deal which sent Olam to Wests.

Round 1 predicted team

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1 Ryan Papenhuyzen
2 Xavier Coates
3 Reimis Smith
4 Nick Meaney
5 Will Warbrick
6 Cameron Munster
7 Jahrome Hughes
8 Tui Kamikamica
9 Harry Grant
10 Christian Welch
11 Trent Loiero
12 Eliesa Katoa
13 Josh King
Interchange
14 Tyran Wishart
15 Nelson Asofa-Solomona
16 Tepai Moeroa
17 Aaron Pene

Other squad members: Bronson Garlick, Chris Lewis, Alec MacDonald, Marion Seve, Shawn Blore, Jonah Pezet, Joe Chan, Jack Howarth, Dean Ieremia, Young Tonumaipea.

Panthers: Jarome Luai is no certainty to be right for the start of the season due to the shoulder injury he carried into last year’s Grand Final which ruled him out of the World Club Challenge final loss to Wigan.

Local junior Jack Cole is considered the frontrunner for the five-eighth role if Luai is out against the Storm.

Taylan May has won the race to replace Stephen Crichton at centre while winger Sunia Turuva suffered a knee injury against Wigan but is confident of being fit for Round 1.

Round 1 predicted team

1 Dylan Edwards
2 Sunia Turuva
3 Izack Tago
4 Taylan May
5 Brian To’o
6 Jarome Luai
7 Nathan Cleary
8 James Fisher-Harris
9 Mitch Kenny
10 Moses Leota
11 Scott Sorensen
12 Liam Martin
13 Isaah Yeo
Interchange
14 Soni Luke
15 Lindsay Smith
16 Matt Eisenhuth
17 Luke Garner

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Other squad members: Brad Schneider, Daine Laurie, Harrison Hassett, Paul Alamoti, Mavrik Geyer, Liam Henry, Jesse McLean, Tyrone Peachey, Jack Cole, Ativalu Lisati. 

Parramatta vs Canterbury at CommBank Stadium: 5.30pm, Saturday March 9

Odds: Eels $1.48, Bulldogs $2.65 – odds via PlayUp

Eels: Ryan Matterson (back) and Bailey Simonsson (hamstring) failed to finish Sunday’s trial win over the Titans. Matterson was more of a precaution but Simonsson could be under a cloud for Round 1.

Fijian winger Maika Sivo is facing a three-game ban for a hit on AJ Brimson in the second trial. Haze Dunster and Manly recruit Morgan Harper are likely replacements out wide.

Round 1 predicted team

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1 Clint Gutherson
2 Haze Dunster
3 Will Penisini
4 Bailey Simonsson
5 Sean Russell
6 Dylan Brown
7 Mitchell Moses
8 Junior Paulo
9 Joey Lussick
10 Reagan Campbell-Gillard
11 Shaun Lane
12 Bryce Cartwright
13 J’maine Hopgood
Interchange
14 Brendan Hands
15 Kelma Tuilagi
16 Ryan Matterson
17 Joe Ofahengaue

Other squad members: Maika Sivo (suspended), Daejarn Asi, Makahesi Makatoa, Zac Cini, Wiremu Greig, Toni Mataele, Tevita Taumoepenu, Ofahiki Ogden, Matt Doorey, Morgan Harper, Ky Rodwell, Jirah Momoisea.

Bulldogs: Panthers star Stephen Crichton looks like he will start in the centres even though he switched to Canterbury looking to nail down the fullback spot.

Former Sharks young gun Bronson Xerri will resurrect his career as the other centre.

Blake Taaffe struggled at fullback in the trial loss to Cronulla while Drew Hutchison did not have much impact at halfback.

Round 1 predicted team

1 Blake Taaffe
2 Blake Wilson
3 Bronson Xerri
4 Stephen Crichton
5 Josh Addo-Carr
6 Matt Burton
7 Drew Hutchison
8 Poasa Faamausili
9 Reed Mahoney
10 Max King
11 Viliame Kikau
12 Jacob Preston
13 Jaeman Salmon
Interchange
14 Connor Tracey
15 Sam Hughes
16 Kurt Mann
17 Josh Curran

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Other squad members: Karl Oloapu (injured), Liam Knight, Bailey Biondi-Odo, Kitione Kautoga, Jordan Samrani, Jacob Kiraz, Jeral Skelton, Ryan Sutton, Jake Turpin, Hayze Perham, Chris Patolo, Kurtis Morrin, Zac Montgomery, Toby Sexton.

Gold Coast vs St George Illawarra at Cbus Super Stadium: 5.30pm, Saturday March 8

Odds: Titans $1.45, Dragons $2.75 – odds via PlayUp

Titans: David Fifita is out of the start of the season due to surgery for a pectoral tear suffered late last year while Jayden Campbell (knee) will also not be back until Round 3.

Kieran Foran was rested from the trials and will partner Tanah Boyd in the halves. AJ Brimson will stick to centre with Keano Kini at fullback for Campbell.

Klese Haas and Jacob Alick are pushing for a back-row position to partner Beau Fermor, who is returning from an ACL tear that kept him out of the entire 2023 season.

Round 1 predicted team

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1 Keano Kini
2 Alofiana Khan-Pereira
3 Brian Kelly
4 AJ Brimson
5 Phillip Sami
6 Kieran Foran
7 Tanah Boyd
8 Moeaki Fotuaika
9 Sam Verrills
10 Isaac Liu
11 Joe Stimson
12 Beau Fermor
13 Tino Fa’asuamaleaui
Interchange
14 Chris Randall
15 Jaimin Jolliffe
16 Klese Haas
17 Keenan Palasia

Other squad members: David Fifita, Jayden Campbell (injured), Harley Smith-Shields, Jojo Fifita, Iszac Fa’asuamaleaui, Erin Clark, Jacob Alick, Aaron Schoupp, Josiah Pahulu, Ken Maumolo, Ryan Foran, Tom Weaver, Tony Francis

MUDGEE, AUSTRALIA - FEBRUARY 24: Kyle Flanagan of the Dragons passes during the NRL Pre-season challenge match between St George Illawarra Dragons and Wests Tigers at Glen Willow Sporting Complex on February 24, 2024 in Mudgee, Australia. (Photo by Mark Evans/Getty Images)

Kyle Flanagan passes in Mudgee. (Photo by Mark Evans/Getty Images)

Dragons: Kyle Flanagan will start at five-eighth following Junior Amone being stood down due to being found guilty of assault. Rabbitohs forward Hame Sele, Canterbury second-rower Raymond Faitala-Mariner and Storm veteran Tom Eisenhuth will bolster the pack, as will late acquisition Luciano Leilua from the Cowboys.  

Jack Bird returns to centre from the pack, pushing Zac Lomax to the wing.

St George Illawarra forwards Jacob Liddle and Blake Lawrie, failed to finish their trial win over Wests Tigers. Both are aiming to play round one against Gold Coast after Lawrie suffered rib cartilage damage and Liddle picked up a low-grade hamstring injury.

Round 1 predicted team

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1 Tyrell Sloan
2 Zac Lomax
3 Moses Suli
4 Jack Bird
5 Mikaele Ravalawa
6 Kyle Flanagan
7 Ben Hunt
8 Blake Lawrie
9 Jacob Liddle
10 Francis Molo
11 Raymond Faitala-Mariner
12 Jaydn Su’A
13 Jack de Belin
Interchange
14 Jesse Marschke
15 Luciano Leilua
16 Tom Eisenhuth
17 Hame Sele 

Other squad members: Corey Allan (injured – torn ACL), Cody Ramsey (unavailable due to illness), Toby Couchman, Dan Russell, Michael Molo, Ben Murdoch-Masila, Mat Feagai, Paul Turner, Ryan Couchman, Max Feagai, Viliami Fifita, Sione Finau, Savelio Tamale, Alec Tuitavake. 

Dolphins vs North Queensland at Suncorp Stadium: 4.05pm, Sunday March 10

Odds: Dolphins $2.50, Cowboys $1.53 – odds via PlayUp

Dolphins: The Dolphins’ weak point in 2023 was their centres, and they have immediately upgraded both with the arrival of Broncos star Herbie Farnworth and Canterbury’s Jake Averillo.

Tom Flegler boosts the pack but the Dolphins have copped a major blow with Tom Gilbert suffering an ACL tear.

Sean O’Sullivan was concussed in the trial against the Warriors.

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Round 1 predicted team

1 Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow
2 Jamayne Isaako
3 Herbie Farnworth
4 Jake Averillo
5 Tesi Niu
6 Isaiya Katoa
7 Sean O’Sullivan
8 Jesse Bromwich
9 Jeremy Marshall-King
10 Tom Flegler
11 Felise Kaufusi
12 Connolly Lemuelu
13 Kenny Bromwich
Interchange
14 Kodi Nikorima
15 Josh Kerr
16 Mark Nicholls
17 Jarrod Wallace

Other squad members: Tom Gilbert (injured), Valynce Te Whare, Max Plath, Ray Stone, Jack Bostock, Edrick Lee, Euan Aitken, Harrison Graham, Mason Teague, Robert Jennings, Oryn Keeley, Anthony Milford

Cowboys: Luciano Leilua has departed for the Dragons and Coen Hess is likely to be out for a lengthy stretch with a knee injury but the Cowboys have plenty of forward depth.

Zac Laybutt looks set to get the centre berth left vacant by Peta Hiku’s switch to the Super League.

Reuben Cotter sat out All-Stars due to a few recent concussions but is not considered in doubt for Round 1.

Jake Clifford has returned to his original club after stints at Newcastle and the Super League, potentially with a view to the former junior representative star taking over from Chad Townsend as the chief on-field organiser.

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Round 1 predicted team

1 Scott Drinkwater
2 Murray Taulagi
3 Zac Laybutt
4 Valentine Holmes
5 Kyle Feldt
6 Tom Dearden
7 Chad Townsend
8 Jordan McLean
9 Reece Robson
10 Jason Taumalolo
11 Jeremiah Nanai
12 Heilum Luki
13 Reuben Cotter
Interchange
14 Jake Granville
15 Thomas Mikaele
16 Griffin Neame
17 Kulikefu Finefeuiaki

Other squad members: Coen Hess (injured), Jake Clifford, Jack Gosiewski, Viliami Vailea, Tom Chester, Thomas Duffy, Sam McIntyre, Robert Derby, Jamayne Taunoa-Brown, D’Jazirhae Pua’avase, Semi Valemei. 

AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - FEBRUARY 09: West Tigers assistant coach Benji Marshall looks on ahead of the NRL trial match between New Zealand Warriors and Wests Tigers at Mt Smart Stadium on February 09, 2023 in Auckland, New Zealand. (Photo by Hannah Peters/Getty Images)

Benji Marshall. (Photo by Hannah Peters/Getty Images)

Bye – Wests Tigers

Tigers: Former Raiders playmaker Aiden Sezer was brilliant in his first match at the club and looks set to partner Jayden Sullivan in the halves.

Justin Olam gives the young team a much-needed jolt of experience and impact out wide while David Nofoaluma is no longer at the club after his controversial abrupt exit midway through the off-season after a clash with new coach Benji Marshall.

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Round 2 predicted team

1 Jahream Bula
2 Junior Tupou
3 Starford To’a
4 Justin Olam
5 Charlie Staines
6 Jayden Sullivan
7 Aidan Sezer
8 David Klemmer
9 Api Koroisau
10 Stefano Utoikamanu
11 Isaiah Papali’i
12 John Bateman
13 Fonua Pole
Interchange
14 Jake Simpkin
15 Asu Kepaoa
16 Alex Twal
17 Alex Seyfarth

Other squad members: Adam Doueihi (injured), Brent Naden, David Nofoaluma, Josh Feledy, Lachlan Galvin, Latu Fainu, Solomon Alaimalo, Brandon Tumeth, Justin Matamua, Kit Laulili, Samuela Fainu, Tallyn Da Silva, Sione Fainu, Jordan Miller

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