The Bulldogs are in the midst of a worrying forwards crisis, while the Eels are set to welcome back star back-rower Shaun Lane
Meanwhile, the Dolphins’ halves woes continue after Anthony Milford joined Sean O’Sullivan on the sidelines, but a returning star is set to fill the void.
Plus — more changes on the way for the Tigers?
Read on for the Team Tips for Round 6.
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Sharks start strong but fall in 79th min | 01:06
THURSDAY APRIL 6
Melbourne Storm vs Sydney Roosters at AAMI Park, 7.50pm AEDT
Last week’s Storm team: 1. Nick Meaney 2. William Warbrick 3. Reimis Smith 4. Justin Olam 5. Xavier Coates 6. Cameron Munster 7. Jonah Pezet 8. Tui Kamikamica 9. Harry Grant 10. Christian Welch 11. Trent Loiero 12. Eliesa Katoa 13. Josh King 14. Bronson Garlick 15. Alec MacDonald 17. Tom Eisenhuth 18. Grant Anderson
Team Tips: Star recruit Tariq Sims was a late scratching from the bench. Craig Bellamy said Sims needed to get some match fitness in Queensland Cup after a disrupted off-season, but he expects him back in the team soon and his Storm debut could be against the Roosters, which would be a match that would suit his agressive style. Jahrome Hughes returns from suspension at halfback, with Jonah Pezet to make way despite impressing in the New Zealand star’s absence. Tepai Moeroa (calf) and Joe Chan (calf) are both due back from injury, but could struggle to crack the 17.
Last week’s Roosters team: 1. James Tedesco 2. Daniel Tupou 3. Joseph Suaalii 4. Drew Hutchison 5. Jaxson Paulo 6. Luke Keary 7. Sam Walker 8. Jared Waerea-Hargreaves 9. Brandon Smith 10. Lindsay Collins 11. Egan Butcher 12. Nat Butcher 13. Victor Radley 14. Jake Turpin 15. Naufahu Whyte 16. Corey Allan 17. Fletcher Baker
Team Tips: Roosters captain James Tedesco failed his HIA after a high shot from Bailey Simonsson and will be sidelined for 11 days under the concussion stand down policy. Joseph Suaalii or Joey Manu, who returns from suspension will vie to replace Tedesco, with Suaalii tipped to get the nod after impressing against the Eels. It’s a big call for the Roosters who were rocked by Suaalii’s defection to rugby from 2025. Paul Momirovski or Junior Pauga will fill the void in the centres. Nathan Brown is an outside chance to debut for the Roosters as he bids to return from a hamstring injury.
Broncos make it five straight wins! | 02:18
FRIDAY APRIL 7
Canterbury Bulldogs vs South Sydney Rabbitohs at Accor Stadium, 4.05pm AEDT
Last week’s Bulldogs team: 1. Hayze Perham 2. Jacob Kiraz 3. Jake Averillo 4. Paul Alamoti 5. Josh Addo-Carr 6. Matt Burton 7. Kyle Flanagan 8. Max King 9. Reed Mahoney 10. Ryan Sutton 12. Jacob Preston 13. Raymond Faitala-Mariner 15. Corey Waddell 14. Josh Reynolds 16. Franklin Pele 17. Jayden Okunbor 20. Kurtis Morrin
Team Tips: The Bulldogs face a forwards injury crisis after their golden point win over the Cowboys. Prop Max King (eye) is in doubt with Cameron Ciraldo admitting after the win over the Cowboys: “He doesn’t look great.” Raymond Faitala-Mariner (head knock) and Franklin Pele (fractured arm) are both out. Second-rower Jacob Preston also has a hand injury, with Phil Gould describing him as “doubtful” for Friday’s game.
Adding to their forwards injury woes, Viliame Kikau (concussion) and Tevita Pangai Junior (calf) are not due back until Round 7. Winger Jayden Okunbor faces a potential one to two week ban after being charged for a hip drop tackle.
Gould said the Bulldogs would make a decision on whether they would contest Okunbor’s charge on Monday, while also providing an update on Pangai Junior.
“TPJ will join the main group for training this week, for the first time since January. Albeit a very short week, because of the 4 day turnaround,” he wrote.
“Probably only one light session for the team to prepare for Good Friday game. (Terrible draw). TPJ will need to do much more. They’d like to see him complete a couple of weeks of training before playing.”
Last week’s Rabbitohs team: 1. Latrell Mitchell 2. Alex Johnston 3. Isaiah Tass 4. Campbell Graham 5. Izaac Tu’itupou Thompson 6. Cody Walker 7. Lachlan Ilias 8. Daniel Suluka-Fifita 9. Damien Cook 10. Thomas Burgess 11. Keaon Koloamatangi 12. Jacob Host 13. Cameron Murray 14. Jed Cartwright 15. Michael Chee Kam 16. Davvy Moale 17. Hame Sele
Team Tips: Winger Alex Johnston (concussion) is out with Taane Milne likely to replace him on the wing. Blake Taaffe could be an option to come onto the bench to give Souths more creativity and speed as they have struggled to score points of late, with Jed Cartwright the man likely to make way.
North Queensland Cowboys vs Dolphins at Queensland Country Bank Stadium, 8.00pm AEDT
Last week’s Cowboys team: 1. Tomas Chester 2. Kyle Feldt 3. Valentine Holmes 4. Peta Hiku 5. Brendan Elliot 6. Tom Dearden 7. Chad Townsend 8. Jordan McLean 9. Reece Robson 15. Mitchell Dunn 11. Coen Hess 12. Heilum Luki 13. Jason Taumalolo 10. Griffin Neame 14. Jake Granville 16. Jamayne Taunoa-Brown 17. Riley Price
Team Tips: Forwards Heilum Luki and Jordan McLean are in doubt after suffering suspected hamstring injuries against the Bulldogs. “Jordan McLean wasn’t too bad. I was really concerned for Heilum about his knee, he was pretty upset when he came off and I didn’t have a good feeling but the medical team said it was just his hamstring, so touch wood,” coach Todd Payten said. Scott Drinkwater returns from suspension at fullback, with Tomas Chester to make way. Reuben Cotter is an outside chance to return from a knee injury in what would be a timely boost given the club’s forward injury problems.
Last week’s Dolphins team: 1. Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow 2. Jamayne Isaako 3. Euan Aitken 4. Brenko Lee 5. Jack Bostock 6. Isaiya Katoa 7. Anthony Milford 8. Jesse Bromwich 9. Jeremy Marshall-King 10. Herman Ese’ese 11. Kenny Bromwich 12. Connelly Lemuelu 13. Tom Gilbert 14. Jarrod Wallace 15. Mark Nicholls 16. Ray Stone 17. Mason Teague
Team Tips: The Dolphins face a halves crisis, with Anthony Milford (hamstring) facing up to a month on the sidelines joining Sean O’Sullivan in the casualty ward. Isaiya Katoa will switch to halfback with Kodi Nikorima due back from a facial cut and expected to play five-eighth, according to Wayne Bennett. Prop Hemran Ese’ese can escape with a fine for a dangerous contact charge.
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Dragons down Dolphins in big win | 02:12
SATURDAY APRIL 8
Penrith Panthers vs Manly Sea Eagles at BlueBet Stadium, 5.30pm AEDT
Last week’s Panthers team: 1. Dylan Edwards 2. Sunia Turuva 3. Izack Tago 4. Stephen Crichton 5. Brian To’o 6. Jarome Luai 7. Nathan Cleary 8. Moses Leota 9. Mitch Kenny 10. James Fisher-Harris 11. Scott Sorensen 12. Zac Hosking 13. Isaah Yeo 14. Tyrone Peachey 15. Lindsay Smith 16. Spencer Leniu 17. Jaeman Salmon
Team Tips: Prop James Fisher-Harris suffered a knee injury against the Raiders, but was strapped to come back on until the Panthers put him on ice as they ran away with it. “Was talking about coming back on… must have done something to his medial,” coach Ivan Cleary said. Cleary faces a selection conundrum with Zac Hosking starring in the second row and Liam Martin (hamstring) and Luke Garner (ribs) due back this week. Utility Soni Luke (concussion) is also due back with Tyrone Peachey likely to make way on the bench.
Last week’s Sea Eagles team: 1. Tom Trbojevic 2. Christian Tuipulotu 3. Brad Parker 4. Morgan Harper 5. Reuben Garrick 19. Cooper Johns 7. Daly Cherry-Evans 8. Taniela Paseka 9. Lachlan Croker 10. Jake Trbojevic 11. Haumole Olakau’atu 12. Kelma Tuilagi 13. Josh Aloiai 14. Kaeo Weekes 15. Ben Trbojevic 16. Ethan Bullemor 17. Sean Keppie
Team Tips: Josh Schuster (quad) is due back from injury, with Cooper Johns set to make way at five-eighth. Winger Christian Tuipulotu (knee) will need a scan and with Tolu Koula and Jason Saab also sidelined, the Sea Eagles face a crisis on the flank. Ben Trbojevic (hamstring) is in doubt, with Karl Lawton his likely replacement on the bench. Lachlan Croker (shoulder) is expected to take his place at hooker. Halfback Jamie Humphreys (jaw) is due back form injury, but will struggle to force his way into the 17.
Brisbane Broncos vs Canberra Raiders at Suncorp Stadium, 7.35pm AEDT
Last week’s Broncos team: 1. Reece Walsh 2. Jesse Arthars 3. Kotoni Staggs 4. Herbie Farnworth 5. Selwyn Cobbo 6. Ezra Mam 7. Adam Reynolds 8. Thomas Flegler 9. Billy Walters 10. Payne Haas 11. Kurt Capewell 12. Jordan Riki 13. Patrick Carrigan 14. Cory Paix 15. Keenan Palasia 16. Corey Jensen 17. Martin Taupau
Team Tips: Fullback Reece Walsh was cleared of injury after he experienced cramping late in the win over the Tigers. Five-eighth Ezra Mam rolled his ankle, but is expected to face the Raiders.
Last week’s Raiders team: 1. Sebastian Kris 2. Albert Hopoate 3. Matthew Timoko 4. Harley Smith-Shields 5. Jordan Rapana 6. Matt Frawley 7. Jamal Fogarty 8. Josh Papalii’i 9. Zac Woolford 10. Joseph Tapine 11. Hudson Young 12. Elliott Whitehead 13. Corey Harawira-Naera 14. Tom Starling 15. Emre Guler 16. Pasami Saulo 17. Corey Horsburgh
Team Tips: With Jack Wighton suspended until Round 7 and Matt Frawley now out with a broken hand until Round 10 at the earliest, Brad Schneider is set to partner Jamal Fogarty in the halves. Ricky Stuart confirmed Xavier Savage would not be back until Round 7 at the earliest with Sebastian Kris to fill the fullback spot until he returns.
Knights and Sea Eagles ends in draw! | 01:03
SUNDAY APRIL 9
Gold Coast Titans vs St George Illawarra Dragons at Cbus Super Stadium Stadium, 4.05pm AEDT
Round 4 Titans team: 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. Chris Randall 10. Tino Fa’asuamaleaui 11. David Fifita 12. Joe Stimson 13. Isaac Liu 14. Jayden Campbell 15. Jo Vuna 16. Erin Clark 17. Iszac Fa’asumaleaui
Team Tips: AJ Brimson (hamstring) is out with utility Jayden Campbell set to come in at fullback. Kieran Foran (calf) is also sidelined with Toby Sexton likely to come into the halves. Jojo Fifita (knee) is an outside chance to return, but may struggle to force his way into the side after Alofiana Khan-Pereira’s double before the bye.
Last week’s Dragons team: 1. Tyrell Sloan 2. Mathew Feagai 3. Moses Suli 4. Zac Lomax 5. Mikaele Ravalawa 21. Talatau Amone 7. Ben Hunt 8. Francis Molo 14. Jacob Liddle 10. Blake Lawrie 11. Ben Murdoch-Masila 12. Jaydn Su’A 13. Jack Bird 9. Moses Mbye 16. Toby Couchman 17. Josh Kerr 22. Jack de Belin
Team Tips: Second-rower Jaydn Su’A (calf) is in doubt with Jack de Belin a chance to start at lock, which would push Jack Bird to the edge. Jayden Sullivan (shoulder) was a late scratching last week, with his replacement Talatau Amone expected to hold onto the five-eighth spot after the impressive win over the Dolphins. De Belin can escape with a fine for a dangerous contact charge. Winger Mikaele Ravalawa can pay a fine for his careless high tackle charge.
Newcastle Knights vs Warriors at McDonald Jones Stadium, 6.15pm AEDT
Last week’s Knights team: 1. Lachlan Miller 5. Greg Marzhew 3. Dane Gagai 4. Bradman Best 20. Dominic Young 6. Tyson Gamble 7. Jackson Hastings 8. Daniel Saifiti 9. Jayden Brailey 10. Leo Thompson 11. Tyson Frizell 12. Lachlan Fitzgibbon 13. Jack Johns 14. Phoenix Crossland 15. Jack Hetherington 16. Mathew Croker 17. Brodie Jones
Team Tips: Five-eighth Tyson Gamble is set to miss a week with concussion adding to the Knights’ woes in the No.6 jeresy. Adam O’Brien will consult doctors this week over an update on Kalyn Ponga’s return. With Ponga unlikely to return in Round 6, utility Phoenix Crossland could be used in the position. However, Kurt Mann is due back from concussion and may come straight in at No.6, with Adam Clune (hand) also sidelined. Matt Croker (ribs) went off against Manly, but is expected to line up against the Warriors. Hymel Hunt was a late scratching last week, but after his replacement Dominic Young scored four tries against Manly, he may struggle to get back in the team even if he recovers in time. Lachlan Fitzgibon can escape with a fine after being sin-binned for a careless high tackle against Manly.
Last week’s Warriors team: 1. Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad 2. Edward Kosi 3. Viliami Vailea 4. Adam Pompey 5. Marcelo Montoya 6. Ronald Volkman 7. Shaun Johnson 8. Addin Fonua-Blake 9. Wayde Egan 10. Bunty Afoa 11. Jackson Ford 12. Marata Niukore 16. Jazz Tevaga 14. Dylan Walker 15. Bayley Sironen 17. Tom Ale 18. Josh Curran
Team Tips: Enforcer Marata Niukore was charged for a hip drop tackle and faces a ban of two to three weeks. Luckily the Warriors have plenty of troops returning in Round 6 with Mitch Barnett (neck) expected to be back on deck, while Tohu Harris is a chance to return from a knee injury. Te Maire Martin is due back from a head knock, with Ronald Volkman set to make way. Dallin Watene-Zelezniak and Brayden Wiliame are due back from calf injuries, with Edward Kosi and Viliami Vailea a chance to drop out, but coach Andrew Webster may be reluctant to change a winning formula if they are not 100 per cent and they could return in reserve grade to get their match fitness up.
MONDAY APRIL 10
Wests Tigers vs Parramatta Eels at Accor Stadium, 4.00pm AEDT
Last week’s Tigers team: 1. Adam Doueihi 2. Charlie Staines 17. Starford To’a 4. Asu Kepaoa 5. Junior Tupou 6. Brandon Wakeham 7. Luke Brooks 15. Alex Twal 9. Apisai Koroisau 10. David Klemmer 11. Isaiah Papali’i 12. John Bateman 13. Fonua Pole 8. Stefano Utoikamanu 14. Jake Simpkin 16. Justin Matamua 18. Shawn Blore
Team Tips: The Tigers are set to shake up their spine once again, with the Daily Telegraph reporting that Adam Doueihi and Luke Brooks will be named in the halves for Monday’s game. The Telegraph reports Charlie Staines is the favourite to land the vacant fullback role, but that Daine Laurie is also in consideration. It would see Brandon Wakeham miss out. Steve ‘Blocker’ Roach said he was a “fan” of the move when the report was mentioned on ‘NRL Tonight’ on Monday but added he still believes Doueihi is best served playing centre. Speaking of centre, Brent Naden is set to return from illness, with Starford To’a dropping back to the bench or out of the 17. Tommy Talau is an outside chance to return from a (broken nose) with Junior Tupou or Asu Kepaoa to make way if he is cleared. Fonua Pole can escape with a fine for a crusher tackle, while Tupou can also pay a fine for a shoulder charge against the Broncos.
Last week’s Eels team: 1. Clinton Gutherson 2. Maika Sivo 3. Viliami Penisini 4. Waqa Blake 5. Bailey Simonsson 6. Dylan Brown 7. Mitchell Moses 8. Reagan Campbell-Gillard 9. Josh Hodgson 10. Wiremu Greig 11. Bryce Cartwright 12. Ryan Matterson 13. J’maine Hopgood 14. Matt Doorey 15. Brendan Hands 16. Jack Murchie 17. Makahesi Makatoa
Team Tips: Shaun Lane is due back from a broken jaw, with Bryce Cartwright likely to switch to the bench and Matt Doorey or Jack Murchie to miss out. Winger Bailey Simonsson is looking at a ban for his grade three careless high tackle charge on James Tedesco, with Haze Dunster his likely replacement. Halfback Mitchell Moses looked to have suffered a pec/shoulder injury, but Brad Arthur said it was just a burner and he should be right to play.
Bye: Cronulla Sharks
Team Tips: Dale Finucane was charged for a hip drop tackle and faces a ban of three to four weeks.
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