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Origin absences force major reshuffles, Fifita sidelined



Round 13 means the first of two weeks in the NRL season when teams are hit hard by State of Origin absentees.

The Cowboys, Panthers, Roosters and Raiders are the four teams suffering the most this weekend as eight other teams put their feet up in the countdown to next Wednesday’s State of Origin series opener.

North Queensland are away to the Titans on Thursday night with the home side only missing captain Tino Fa’asuamaleaui to Origin duty while the Cowboys have Valentine Holmes, Tom Dearden, Reuben Cotter and Jeremiah Nanai in the Maroons camp. Winger Murray Taulagi and centre Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow will be allowed to return to the Cowboys from the Queensland squad.

Titans forward David Fifita was not picked by Queensland but is also out for 2-3 weeks with a recurrence of his knee injury.

Penrith will have six stars sidelined on Friday night when they host the Bulldogs, who have no Origin representatives after Josh Addo-Carr‘s shock omission from the Blues team. Api Koroisau will be allowed to play for the Panthers as he is among the NSW reserves.

Manly will miss Daly Cherry-Evans only for Saturday’s stoush with the Warriors while the Raiders will be without Jack Wighton and Josh Papali’i and James Tedesco, Lindsay Collins and Daniel Tupou won’t be lining up for the Roosters when they meet in Canberra on Sunday. Blues squad member Joseph Suaalii can return to club duty for the visitors.

As of this round, clubs are now required to name a 22-man squad on Tuesday rather than 24 players which applied for the first half of the season. 

Round 13 team lists

Thursday

Titans v Cowboys at Cbus Super Stadium, 7.50pm (AEST)

Titans: Star forward David Fifita was not picked by Queensland but is also out for 2-3 weeks with a recurrence of his knee injury. Tino Fa’asuamaleaui is their only absentee on Origin duty. Moeaki Fotuaika returning from an ankle injury at prop gives the pack a boost with Isaac Liu reverting to lock to cover for Fa’asuamaleaui.

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. Beau Fermor 13. Isaac Liu 14. Tanah Boyd 15. Jaimin Jolliffe 16. Esan Marsters 17. Sam Lisone 18. Aaron Booth 19. Herman Ese’ese 20. Greg Marzhew 21. Alofiana Khan-Pereira 22. Sosefo Fifita

Cowboys: Todd Payten has had to bring in new faces with Valentine Holmes, Jeremiah Nanai and Reuben Cotter in Queensland camp. Tom Dearden is also not allowed to play as he is the Maroons’ 18th man. Journeyman winger Brendan Elliot has been called in to the backs with Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow switching to Holmes’ centre spot. Ben Hampton replaces Dearden in the halves and Heilum Luki starts for Nanai with Connelly Lemuelu added to the bench.

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

Friday

Panthers v Bulldogs at Blue Bet Stadium, 7.55pm (AEST)

Panthers: With six stars out, Ivan Cleary is fielding a vastly different team to the one which conquered the Cowboys – Nathan Cleary, Brian To’o, Jarome Luai, Liam Martin, Isaah Yeo and Stephen Crichton are absent on NSW duty. Kurt Falls will partner Sean O’Sullivan in the halves while Robert Jennings and Charlie Staines have been recalled out wide and Chris Smith and Matt Eisenhuth brought into the pack.

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

Bulldogs: Josh Addo-Carr will be out to show he should have been selected for the Blues. Tevita Pangai jnr is out again with a back complaint.

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

Saturday

Sea Eagles v Warriors at 4 Pines Park, 7.35pm (AEST)

Sea Eagles: Jake Trbojevic will pack down for Manly eager to prove he’s still up to Origin standard after being dumped by the Blues. Queensland captain Daly Cherry-Evans is their only Origin rep. Josh Schuster gets a run at his preferred five-eighth position with Kieran Foran switching to halfback. Martin Taupau (thigh), Jason Saab (toe) and Karl Lawton (suspension) are back in the line-up.

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 De Luis 21. Kaeo Weekes 22. Jorge Taufua

Warriors: With speculation mounting over Nathan Brown’s tenure, club owner Mark Robinson has declared no decision on his future will be made until the end of the season. They have been boosted by the returns of Wayde Egan and Bayley Sironen from calf and osteitis pubis injuries respectively.

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 (c) 13. Jack Murchie.
Interchange: 14. Taniela Otukolo 15. Bunty Afoa 16. Aaron Pene 17. Bayley Sironen 18. Freddy Lussick 20. Dunamis Lui 21. Eliesa Katoa 22. Daejarn Asi 23. Jesse Arthars

Sunday

Raiders v Roosters at GIO Stadium, 4.05pm (AEST)

Raiders: No Jack Wighton or Josh Papali’i leaves two big holes for Ricky Stuart to fill. Matt Frawley has been recalled at five-eighth while Corey Horsburgh starts at prop with Trey Mooney added to the interchange.

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

Roosters: James Tedesco and Daniel Tupou are out of the backline and Lindsay Collins from the pack. Joey Manu will start at fullback while Kevin Naiqama and Billy Smith have been added to the outside backs. Siosiua Taukeiaho will start at prop for Collins while Sitili Tupouniua has been elevated to the run-on team at second-rower with Egan Butcher recalled to the bench.

1. Joseph Manu 2. Billy Smith 3. Paul Momirovski 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



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