Round 27 team news, ins and outs, injuries, return dates, Joey Manu, Rabbitohs vs Roosters, Nicho Hynes, Sharks vs Raiders, Tohu Harris, Warriors


Roosters coach Trent Robinson is facing a major call on star centre Joey Manu ahead of his side’s biggest game of the season.

The Raiders are sweating on the availability of fiery lock Corey Horsburgh and could be set for mass changes after a failed backline reshuffle last week.

Coach Ricky Stuart may be forced into making a tough decision on Jarrod Croker after the club legend only played three minutes off the bench last week.

Meanwhile, Nicho Hynes is set to return in a major boost for the Sharks. But it’s not so good news for the Warriors, who have copped a fresh injury blow.

The Broncos will be without three of their star plays with the minor premiership on the line in Thursday’s clash with the Storm, while the Knights have made a call on Kalyn Ponga.

Read on for all of the team news ahead of Round 27.

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Manly fly high over battered Bulldogs | 01:33


Brisbane Broncos vs Melbourne Storm 7.50pm AEST at Suncorp Stadium

Last week’s Broncos team: 1. Reece Walsh 2. Corey Oates 3. Kotoni Staggs 4. Herbie Farnworth 5. Selwyn Cobbo 6. Ezra Mam 7. Jock Madden 8. Thomas Flegler 9. Billy Walters 10. Payne Haas 11. Kurt Capewell 12. Jordan Riki 19. Keenan Palasia 14. Tyson Smoothy 15. Brendan Piakura 16. Kobe Hetherington 17. Corey Jensen

Team Tips: Star lock Pat Carrigan was a late scratching due to foot soreness and joined skipper Adam Reynolds (calf) on the sideline last week. Coach Kevin Walters confirmed neither will return for the final round of the season — but will be back for the first week of finals. Jock Madden was rock solid at halfback and will line up there again, while Keenan Palasia is also likely to start at lock once again. Kotoni Staggs will have to sit this one out after being charged with dangerous contact. Jesse Arthars or Deine Mariner will come in for him. Reece Walsh battled a knee niggle late in the game last week but speaking to Fox League post-game he called it a “carry on” and Walters believes he’ll be good to go for this important game which could seal the Broncos’ first minor premiership since 2000.

Last week’s Storm team: 1. Nick Meaney 2. William Warbrick 3. Marion Seve 4. Young Tonumaipea 5. Xavier Coates 6. Cameron Munster 7. Jahrome Hughes 8. Tui Kamikamica 14. Bronson Garlick 10. Christian Welch 11. Trent Loiero 12. Eliesa Katoa 13. Nelson Asofa-Solomona 9. Harry Grant 15. Tom Eisenhuth 16. Tepai Moeroa 19. Ryan Papenhuyzen

Team Tips: The Storm copped an untimely blow last week with star halfback Jahrome Hughes suffering a knee injury. Scans have revealed a minor medial ligament sprain, which will sideline him for Round 27. He is, however, expected to return for finals. Young gun Jonah Pezet will slot straight into the halves to partner Cameron Munster. All eyes were on Ryan Papenhuyzen last week as he made his long-awaited return from a knee injury. Papenhuyzen played 18 minutes off the bench and most importantly made it through unscathed. Coach Craig Bellamy is expected to ease Papenhuyzen in off the bench again this week, but he may get more minutes. Meanwhile, Harry Grant — who was a late switch to the bench — picked up a shoulder niggle during last week’s win over the Titans but is expected to play.


Manly Sea Eagles vs Wests Tigers 6pm AEST at 4 Pines Park

Last week’s Sea Eagles team: 1. Tolutau Koula 2. Jason Saab 3. Brad Parker 4. Morgan Harper 5. Ray Tuaimalo-Vaega 6. Jakob Arthur 7. Daly Cherry-Evans 8. Toafofoa Sipley 9. Lachlan Croker 10. Sean Keppie 11. Haumole Olakau’atu 12. Ben Trbojevic 13. Jake Trbojevic 14. Gordon Chan Kum Tong 15. Kelma Tuilagi 16. Aaron Woods 17. Ethan Bullemor

Team Tips: Reuben Garrick was named in the reserves last week after fracturing his back in Round 25 but didn’t play. It’s understood he is keen to play in Manly’s final game of the year and helping his cause is the fact CEO Tony Mestrov confirmed a painkilling injection is an option and more importantly, playing with the injury won’t cause any further damage. His replacement Tolu Koula was outstanding though filling in at fullback, setting up three tries and running for 275 metres. Pint-sized hooker Gordon Chan Kum Tong played 32 minutes off the bench in what was his NRL debut last week and didn’t look out of place. But with Manly’s feeder side Blacktown Workers playing finals this weekend, Chan Kum Tong might drop back to New South Wales Cup given he’s been an integral part of that side all year. If he does, expect Dean Matterson to move back onto the bench.

Last week’s Tigers team: 1. Jahream Bula 2. David Nofoaluma 3. Triston Reilly 4. Asu Kepaoa 5. Junior Tupou 6. Daine Laurie 7. Will Smith 8. Stefano Utoikamanu 9. Apisai Koroisau 10. David Klemmer 11. Isaiah Papali’i 12. John Bateman 13. Fonua Pole 14. Justin Matamua 15. Shawn Blore 17. Alex Seyfarth 18. Aitasi James

Team Tips: Skipper Api Koroisau started last week’s game at hooker but did have a stint in the halves with Will Smith moving to hooker. With hooker Jake Simpkin expected back from a head knock we may see Koroisau play the full game at halfback this week. Alex Twal should also return after missing last week due to an illness. He’ll join the bench with Aitasi James the man to make way.

Papenhuyzen makes return in Storm win | 03:39

South Sydney Rabbitohs vs Sydney Roosters 8pm AEST at Accor Stadium

Round 25 Rabbitohs team: 1. Latrell Mitchell 2. Alex Johnston 3. Isaiah Tass 4. Campbell Graham 5. Taane Milne 6. Cody Walker 7. Lachlan Ilias 8. Jai Arrow 9. Damien Cook 10. Shaquai Mitchell 11. Keaon Koloamatangi 12. Jacob Host 13. Cameron Murray 14. Tallis Duncan 16. Siliva Havili 19. Hame Sele 21. Tevita Tatola

Team Tips: The Rabbitohs are fresh off the bye but will be without superstar fullback Latrell Mitchell after he copped a one-game ban for dangerous contact on Tyson Frizell in his side’s Round 25 loss to the Knights. Blake Taffee will come straight in at fullback. Tevita Tatola and Hame Sele made successful returns from injuries via the bench in the Rabbitohs’ last game so Tatola may start this week with Shaquai Mitchell moving back to the bench.

Last week’s Roosters team: 1. Joseph Manu 2. Daniel Tupou 3. Billy Smith 4. Corey Allan 5. Joseph-Aukuso Suaalii 6. Luke Keary 7. Sam Walker 8. Jared Waerea-Hargreaves 9. Brandon Smith 10. Lindsay Collins 11. Siua Wong 12. Nat Butcher 13. Victor Radley 14. Sandon Smith 15. Fletcher Baker 16. Terrell May 19. Egan Butcher

Team Tips: Mass changes are expected for the Roosters for this blockbuster clash. Skipper James Tedesco is due back from a head knock and will line up at fullback. Joey Manu is in doubt though after suffering a grade one hamstring strain. Expect Manu to be named with the club confirming he will be “given every opportunity to prove his fitness.” If he is cleared to play, he will shift back into the centres with Corey Allan dropping out of the 17. Regardless, it sets up a major decision for coach Trent Robinson on whether he risks Manu to get into the finals — or hope they can win without him then play him in week one. If he is ruled out, the centre pairing of Billy Smith and Allan will remain. Sam Walker enjoyed a successful return from a knee injury and will be named again at halfback. But the big news coming out of Round 26 is that the Chooks will be without veteran prop Jared Waerea-Hargreaves after he copped a six-game suspension for two incidents in his side’s win over the Tigers. The club has confirmed Waerea-hargreaves has accepted three games for a striking charge but will contest the grading of the dangerous contact charge.Fletcher Baker or Terrell May will start up front with Dylan Napa likely to join the bench.


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Dolphins vs New Zealand Warriors 3pm AEST at Suncorp Stadium

Last week’s Dolphins team: 1. Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow 2. Jamayne Isaako 3. Tesi Niu 16. Euan Aitken 5. Jack Bostock 6. Kodi Nikorima 7. Sean O’Sullivan 14. Jarrod Wallace 9. Harrison Graham 10. Mark Nicholls 11. Felise Kaufusi 12. Connelly Lemuelu 13. Kenny Bromwich 15. Josh Kerr 17. Herman Ese’ese 18. JJ Collins 19. Isaiya Katoa

Team Tips: The Dolphins have been hit hard with injuries late in the season and according to coach Wayne Bennett the only player a chance of returning for their final game of the season is skipper Jesse Bromwich, who missed last week’s game due to a groin injury. It will be a handy boost to the pack though with Bromwich expected to start and Jarrod Wallace to drop back to the bench. JJ Collins will likely remain on the bench given Josh Kerr has copped a one-game ban for a hip drop tackle. Robert Jennings was a late scratching last week with a knee niggle and isn’t expected to play, meaning Euan Aitken will likely line up at centre again.

Last week’s Warriors team: 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. Bunty Afoa 11. Josh Curran 12. Marata Niukore 13. Tohu Harris 14. Dylan Walker 15. Jackson Ford 16. Bayley Sironen 17. Freddy Lussick

Team Tips: The Warriors have copped a couple of major blows on the even of finals. The first was Luke Metcalf’s hamstring injury, suffering during last week’s win over the Dragons. Metcalf came off in the opening minute of the second half and looked shattered as he spent the rest of the game on the bench nursing the injury. Te Maire Martin made his return from a leg injury via NSW Cup and will be the man to come in at five-eighth. And in more recent news, skipper Tohu Harris will miss this game — and potentially week one of finals — due to a back injury, according to SEN NZ’s Sam Hewat. Dylan Walker is an option to start at lock, but has been rock solid as a bench utility. Mitch Barnett has missed the last fortnight with a laceration, but if he’s cleared to play he will be the likely replacement for Harris. The versatile Jazz Tevaga is a chance of returning from a hamstring injury and could come into contention too. It could also open the door for 26-year-old second-rower/lock Kalani Going to make his NRL debut after an impressive season in NSW Cup.

Penrith Panthers vs North Queensland Cowboys 5.30pm AEST at BlueBet Stadium

Last week’s Panthers team: 20. Jesse McLean 21. Thomas Jenkins 3. Tyrone Peachey 4. Stephen Crichton 5. Brian To’o 6. Jarome Luai 7. Nathan Cleary 8. Moses Leota 9. Jack Cogger 10. James Fisher-Harris 11. Zac Hosking 12. Liam Martin 13. Isaah Yeo 14. Soni Luke 15. Lindsay Smith 16. Spencer Leniu 17. Luke Garner

Team Tips: Star five-eighth Jarome Luai is out after dislocating his shoulder in last week’s loss to the Eels. He won’t require immediate surgery, however according to a club statement he has suffered “significant damage.” The Panthers hope Luai will return during the finals, but for now the very capable Jack Cogger will fill in at No.6. Workhorses Dylan Edwards and Sunia Turuva will return after a well-deserved rest last week so debutant Jesse McLean and Tom Jenkins will drop out of the 17. Meanwhile, understands Mitch Kenny (hamstring) and Izack Tago (leg) will be given another week to recover from their respective injuries. With Cogger required in the halves, expect rookie Luke Sommerton to start at hooker. Scott Sorensen is expected to be back on deck after enjoying a week off and will push Zac Hosking back to the bench.

Last week’s Cowboys team: 1. Scott Drinkwater 2. Kyle Feldt 3. Zac Laybutt 4. Peta Hiku 5. Murray Taulagi 6. Tom Dearden 7. Chad Townsend 8. Jordan McLean 9. Reece Robson 10. Jason Taumalolo 11. Luciano Leilua 12. Heilum Luki 13. Reuben Cotter 14. Jake Granville 15. Coen Hess 16. Griffin Neame 17. Kulikefu Finefeuiaki

Team Tips: The Cowboys didn’t pick up any new injuries in their important win over the Dolphins and coach Todd Payten hasn’t given an update on the availability of injured duo Jeremiah Nanai and Semi Valemei. Both missed last week’s game due to respective shoulder and knee injuries. A decision will be made on Nanai in the coming days, while the club said Valemei is “considered week to week.”

St George Illawarra Dragons vs Newcastle Knights 7.35pm AEST at Netstrata Jubilee Stadium

Last week’s Dragons team: 1. Tyrell Sloan 21. Sione Finau 3. Moses Suli 4. Zac Lomax 5. Mikaele Ravalawa 6. Talatau Amone 7. Ben Hunt 8. Francis Molo 14. Connor Muhleisen 10. Blake Lawrie 11. Billy Burns 12. Dan Russell 13. Michael Molo 9. Jacob Liddle 15. Ryan Couchman 16. Ben Murdoch-Masila 17. Zane Musgrove

Team Tips: Sione Finau had a devastating end to his NRL debut with the young winger suffering a syndesmosis injury. The man who made way for him, Mat Feagai, will replace him on the wing. Jack de Belin will return from suspension and likely start at lock with Michael Molo dropping back to the bench for the Dragons’ final game of the season.

Last week’s Knights team: 1. Kalyn Ponga 2. Dominic Young 3. Dane Gagai 4. Bradman Best 5. Greg Marzhew 6. Tyson Gamble 20. Adam Clune 8. Jacob Saifiti 9. Phoenix Crossland 10. Leo Thompson 11. Tyson Frizell 18. Dylan Lucas 13. Adam Elliott 15. Daniel Saifiti 16. Jack Hetherington 17. Mathew Croker 22. Fa’amanu Brown

Team Tips: The Knights have confirmed superstar fullback Kalyn Ponga suffered a high-grade AC shoulder injury in Sunday’s win over the Sharks. He won’t play this week but will aim to return in the first week of finals. Coach Adam O’Brien confirmed that Lachie Miller will come straight in at fullback. With a home final locked in, O’Brien also revealed he “won’t take a risk” with any player that has a niggle. Kurt Mann (sternum), Lachlan Fitzgibbon (shoulder) missed last week but O’Brien was really impressed with their replacements Nu Brown and Dylan Lucas so it’s likely Mann and Fitzgibbon won’t be rushed back. Jackson Hastings is “improving every day,” according to O’Brien after the halfback suffered a syndesmosis injury in Round 24. He’ll likely be named and will be given up until captain’s run to prove his fitness.

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Gold Coast Titans vs Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs 2pm AEST at Cbus Super Stadium

Last week’s Titans team: 1. AJ Brimson 2. Alofiana Khan-Pereira 3. Brian Kelly 4. Aaron Schoupp 5. Jojo Fifita 6. Kieran Foran 7. Thomas Weaver 15. Isaac Liu 9. Chris Randall 10. Jaimin Jolliffe 11. David Fifita 12. Klese Haas 13. Tino Fa’asuamaleaui 14. Kruise Leeming 16. Joe Stimson 17. Jacob Alick 18. Keano Kini

Team Tips: Kieran Foran didn’t finish last week’s game due to a HIA, however given it was in the final 10 minutes it wasn’t revealed whether he passed or failed it. If the veteran playmaker was cleared he will line up for the Titans’ last game of the season. If not, we could see AJ Brimson shift to five-eighth and Keano Kini start at fullback.

Last week’s Bulldogs team: 1. Jake Averillo 2. Blake Wilson 22. Hayze Perham 24. Paul Alamoti 5. Josh Addo-Carr 6. Matt Burton 7. Toby Sexton 15. Luke Thompson 9. Reed Mahoney 10. Liam Knight 11. Viliame Kikau 12. Corey Waddell 13. Harrison Edwards 8. Max King 14. Kyle Flanagan 17. Tevita Pangai Junior 19. Jayden Okunbor

Team Tips: Jacob Kiraz and Braidon Burns were late scratchings with Hayze Perham and Paul Alamoti coming in for them at centre. No word yet on whether Kiraz and Burns will be back for the Dogs’ final game of the season. Kurtis Morrin dropped back to NSW Cup last week with Jayden Okunbor slotting onto the bench. Okunbor is likely to retain that spot for what will be his final game for the club after signing with Super League club Hull FC.

Horsburgh hit hard with 3 game ban | 00:19

Cronulla Sharks vs Canberra Raiders 4.05pm AEST at PointsBet Stadium

Last week’s Sharks team: 1. Connor Tracey 2. Sione Katoa 3. Jesse Ramien 4. Siosifa Talakai 5. Ronaldo Mulitalo 17. Matt Moylan 6. Braydon Trindall 8. Toby Rudolf 9. Blayke Brailey 10. Braden Hamlin-Uele 11. Briton Nikora 12. Wade Graham 13. Cameron McInnes 14. Jack Williams 15. Royce Hunt 16. Thomas Hazelton 18. Jesse Colquhoun

Team Tips: Star halfback Nicho Hynes is expected to return in a timely boost for the Sharks with coach Craig Fitzgibbon saying after Sunday’s loss that he “should be right” for the Raiders. Fitzgibbon added it would’ve been a “big risk” for Hynes to play last week but he should “have enough” time to recover from his minor quad injury by Sunday. He’ll slot straight back in at halfback with Braydon Trindall moving back to five-eighth and Matt Moylan to drop to the bench.

Last week’s Raiders team: 20. Jack Wighton 1. Jordan Rapana 4. Matthew Timoko 21. Sebastian Kris 5. Nick Cotric 6. Matt Frawley 7. Jamal Fogarty 15. Emre Guler 9. Zac Woolford 10. Joseph Tapine 11. Hudson Young 12. Elliott Whitehead 13. Corey Horsburgh 3. Jarrod Croker 8. Josh Papali’i 14. Tom Starling 17. Ata Mariota

Team Tips: In a major blow to the Raiders’ push for finals, fiery lock Corey Horsburgh is facing a three-game ban for a shoulder charge. He will contest the charge at the judiciary on Tuesday night and if he fails his ban will increase to four games. The backline could be set for a shake-up too after several changes fell flat last week. Despite being named at fullback Jack Wighton played in the centres, but he could return to five-eighth with Matt Frawley dropping out of the 17. Albert Hopoate is due back from a rib injury and will likely slot on the wing, while coach Ricky Stuart is facing a big call on Jarrod Croker, who only played three minutes off the bench.

Bye: Parramatta Eels

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