Dogs eye depleted premier for upset of the year

The struggling Bulldogs may have their best chance to steal a game this season, with reigning premier Penrith forced into several changes due to next week’s Origin series opener.

Penrith will be without six of its stars – Stephen Crichton, Brian To’o, Jarome Luai, Nathan Cleary, Liam Martin and Isaah Yeo – who are all out of action with Origin commitments for the Blues.

The Bulldogs, who are out to break a four-game losing streak, will take to the field with star winger Josh Addo-Carr, who remains in the side after missing out on Origin selection.

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In other changes, the Cowboys, who too have several players with Origin commitments, are set to welcome back star lock Jason Taumalolo from injury.

North Queensland currently has six players, with Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow, Valentine Holmes, Murray Taulagi, Tom Dearden, Reuben Cotter and Jeremiah Nanai in Maroons camp.

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THURSDAY

Gold Coast Titans vs North Queensland Cowboys at Cbus Super Stadium, 7.50pm

Titans: 1. Jayden Campbell 2. Corey Thompson 3. Brian Kelly 4. Patrick Herbert 5. jamayne isaako 6. AJ Brimson 7. Toby Sexton 8. Moeaki Fotuaika 9. Erin Clark 10. Jarrod Wallace 11. Sam McIntyre 12. Handsome Fermor 13. isaac liu 14. Tanah Boyd 15. Jaimin Jolliffe 16. Esan Marsters 17. Sam Lisa 18. Aaron Booth 19. Herman Esese 20. Greg Marzhew 21. Alofiana Khan-Pereira 22. Sosefo Fifita

Analysis: Captain Tino Fa’asuamaleaui is out due to Origin commitments, while David Fifita is unavailable after injuring his knee during the Titans’ loss to Brisbane.

In comes Moeaki Fotuaika, who returns at prop following an ankle injury. Meanwhile, Patrick Herbert returns from a calf issue and is back in the centres, with Esan Marsters shifting to the bench.

Cowboys: 1. Scott Drinkwater 2. Brendan Elliot 3. Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow 4. peta hiku 5. Murray Taulagi 6. Ben Hampton 7. Chad Townsend 8. Jordan McLean 9. Reece Robson 10. Coen Hess 11. Tom Gilbert 12. Heilum Luki 13. Jason Taumalolo 14. Jake Granville 15. Connelly Lemuelu 16. Jamayne Taunoa-Brown 17. Griffin Neame 18. Ben Condon 19. Kane Bradley 20. Brendan Frei 22. Riley Price 23. Jake Bourke

Analysis: Valentine Holmes, Tom Dearden, Reuben Cotter and Jeremiah Nanai are out with Origin commitments.

While Murray Taulagi and Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow were named in the Maroons’ extended squad on Monday, they’ve since been released to play.

Also free to play is Jason Taumalolo, who is back from injury at lock. In other changes, Brendan Elliot has been named on the wing while Ben Hampton comes in as five-eighth.

FRIDAY

Penrith Panthers vs Canterbury Bulldogs at BlueBet Stadium, 7.55pm

Panthers: 1. Dylan Edwards 2. Taylan May 3. Izack Tago 4. Robert Jennings 5. Charlie Staines 6. Kurt Falls 7. Sean O’Sullivan 8. Moses Leota 9. Apisai Koroisau 10. James Fisher Harris 11. Viliame Kikau 12. Chris Smith 13. Matt Eisenhuth 14. Mitch Kenny 15. Scott Sorensen 16. Spencer Leniu 17. Jaeman Salmon 18. Soni Luke 19. J’maine Hopgood 20. Lindsay Smith 21. Sunia Turuva 22. Preston Riki

Analysis: Stephen Crichton, Brian To’o, Jarome Luai, Nathan Cleary, Liam Martin and Isaah Yeo all won’t play due to Origin commitments with the Blues.

Robert Jennings (center) and Charlie Staines (wing) come into the side as a result, while Sean O’Sullivan also returns and is tasked with replacing Cleary at halfback. Meanwhile, Kurt Falls will make his NRL debut at five-eighth to replace Luai.

Chris Smith and Matt Eisenhuth have been named to replace Martin and Yeo in the forwards.

Bulldogs: 1. Matt Dufty 2. Jacob Kiraz 3. Aaron Schoupp 4. Jake Averillo 5. Josh Addo Carr 6. Matt Burton 7. Kyle Flanagan 8. Luke Thompson 9. Jeremy Marshall King 10. Paul Vaughan 11. Josh Jackson 12. Raymond Faitala Mariner 13. Max King 14. Zach Dockar-Clay 15. Corey Waddell 16. Chris Patolo 17. Ava Seumanufagai 19. Jackson Topine 20. Bailey Biondi-Odo 21. Joe Stimson 22. Corey Allan 25. Kurtis Morrin

Analysis: Only minor changes to the Bulldogs’ side that went down to the Dragons last weekend.

Raymond Faitala-Mariner will start in the back-row, pushing Corey Waddell to the interchange, while Ava Seumanufagai replaces Joe Stimson on the bench.

SATURDAY

Manly Sea Eagles vs New Zealand Warriors at 4 Pines Park, 7.35pm

Sea Eagles: 1. Reuben Garrick 2. Jason Saab 3. Morgan Harper 4. Tolutau Koula 5. Christian Tuipulotu 6. Josh Schuster 7. Kieran Foran 8. Josh Aloiai 9. Lachlan Croker 10. Toafofoa Sipley 11. Haumole Olakau’atu 12. Andrew Davey 13. Jake Trbojevic 14. Dylan Walker 15. Karl Lawton 16. Martin Taupau 17. Sean Keppie 18. Taniela Paseka 19. Ethan Bullemor 20. Kurt DeLuis 21. Kaeo Weekes 22. Jorge Taufua

Analysis: With skipper Daly Cherry-Evans out due to Origin commitments, Kieran Foran shifts from five-eighth to halfback to replace him, while Josh Schuster moves to five-eighth.

Winger Jason Saab returns from a toe injury and will replace Jorge Taufua on the wing, while Martin Taupau also returns from injury and is named on the interchange.

Also returning to the side is Karl Lawton from suspension, who has been named on the bench.

Warriors: 1. Reece Walsh 2. Dallin Watene-Zelezniak 3. Rocco Berry 4. Adam Pompey 5. Marcelo Montoya 6. Chanel Harris Tavita 7. Shaun Johnson 8. Ben Murdoch-Masila 9. Wayde Egan 10. Jazz Tevaga 11. Euan Aitken 12. Tohu Harris 13. Jack Murchie 14. Taniela Otukolo 15. Bunty Afoa 16. Aaron Pene 17. Bayley Sironen 18. Freddy Lussick 20. Dunamis Him 21. Eliesa Katoa 22. Daejarn Asi 23. Jesse Arthars

Analysis: Hooker Wayde Egan has been named to make his return from a calf injury, and so too Bayley Sironen, who comes in on the interchange.

Those two inclusions see Freddy Lussick named as 18th man and Dunamis Lui shifted to the extended bench.

In other changes, Rocco Berry is named at center to replace Viliami Vailea.

SUNDAY

Canberra Raiders vs Sydney Roosters at GIO Stadium, 4.05pm

Raiders: 1. xavier savage 2. Nick Cotric 3. Matthew Timoko 4. Sebastian Kris 5. Jordan Rapana 6. Matt Frawley 7. Jamal Fogarty 8. Corey Horsburgh 9. Zac Woolford 10. Joseph Tapine 11. Hudson Young 12. Elliott Whitehead 13. Adam Elliott 14. Tom Starling 15. Ryan Sutton 16. Corey Harawira-Naera 17. Trey Mooney 18. James Schiller 19. Harry Rushton 20. Adrian Trevilyan 21. Brad Schneider 22. Emre Guler

Analysis: Jack Wighton and Josh Papalii are both out of action with Origin commitments.

Matt Frawley replaces Wighton at five-eighth, while Corey Horsburgh shifts to prop.

Corey Harawira-Naera and Trey Mooney come into the side and are named on the interchange.

Roasters: 1. Joseph Manu 2. Billy Smith 3. Paul Momirovsky 4. Kevin Naiqama 5. Joseph Suaalii 6. Sam Walker 7. Luke Keary 8. Jared Waerea-Hargreaves 9. Drew Hutchison 10. Siosiua Taukeiaho 11. Angus Crichton 12. Sitili Tupouniua 13. Nat Butcher 14. Connor Watson 15. Fletcher Baker 16. Egan Butcher 17. Terrell May 18. Lachlan Lam 19. Daniel Suluka-Fifita 20. Adam Keighran 21. Tom Carr 22. Ben Marschke

Analysis: James Tedesco, Daniel Toupu and Lindsay Collins are all out of action with Origin duties.

Joey Manu shifts from center to fullback to replace Tedesco, while Kevin Naiqama returns to the side as the new centre.

Billy Smith is named on the wing to replace Tupou and Siosiua Taukeiaho shifts to prop to replace Collins.

Sitili Tupouniua will shift to the starting side as Egan Butcher comes in on the interchange.

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