Team Tips Round 18, early mail, SuperCoach, Tom Trbojevic, Ryan Papenhuyzen, James Tedesco, Roger Tuivasa-Sheck, Jack Wighton

A host of big names are set to return after being rested off the back of Origin III as the race for the top four hots up.

Superstars are back on deck at Penrith, Manly, Souths Parramatta and the Roosters as the battle at the top of the league reaches its crescendo point.

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But in the race to make the eight, Cronulla, Canberra and the Gold Coast have all been dealt blows.

Read on for your Round 19 Team Tips!


Eels v Raiders, 7.50pm, Cbus Super Stadium

Last week’s Eels team: 1. Clinton Gutherson 2. Maika Sivo 3. Tom Opacic 4. Waqa Blake 5. Haze Dunster 6. Dylan Brown 21. Jakob Arthur 8. Reagan Campbell-Gillard 9. Reed Mahoney 14. Marata Niukore 11. Isaiah Papali’i 12. Ryan Matterson 13. Nathan Brown 15. Shaun Lane 16. Oregon Kaufusi 17. Bryce Cartwright 19. Will Smith

Team tips: Origin duo Junior Paulo and Mitchell Moses will return, bumping Marate Niukore back to the bench and Jakob Arthur out of the side.

Last week’s Raiders team: 1. Xavier Savage 2. Semi Valemei 3. Jarrod Croker 4. Sebastian Kris 5. Jordan Rapana 6. Jack Wighton 7. Sam Williams 16. Iosia Soliola 9. Josh Hodgson 10. Emre Guler 11. Corey Harawira-Naera 12. Hudson Young 13. Ryan Sutton 14. Tom Starling 8. Josh Papalii 15. Joseph Tapine 17. Ryan James

Team tips: Star five-eighth Jack Wighton suffered a sternum injury in the Raiders’ win over the Sharks. Raiders assistant coach Michael Ennis told The Big League Wrap the NSW representative was unlikely to play with Matt Frawley set to come in. Elliott Whitehead is also struggling with a shoulder problem so may be forced to sit out another week. Josh Papalii will shift to the starting side, with Sia Soliola the man to drop to the bench.

O’Brien takes blame for result vs Storm | 04:05


Roosters v Knights, 6pm, Sunshine Coast Stadium

Last week’s Roosters team: 4. Joseph Manu 2. Daniel Tupou 3. Josh Morris 19. Billy Smith 5. Matt Ikuvalu 6. Drew Hutchison 7. Sam Walker 8. Jared Waerea-Hargreaves 9. Sam Verrills 10. Isaac Liu 15. Nat Butcher 12. Sitili Tupouniua 13. Victor Radley 14. Lachlan Lam 11. Angus Crichton 16. Egan Butcher 17. Fletcher Baker

Team tips: James Tedesco will come straight back in for the Chooks after being rested for the win over the Cowboys. In turn, Joey Manu will go back to centre with Billy Smith the most likely to miss out on a starting spot. Angus Crichton will swap places with Nat Butcher after being put on the bench in the wake of Origin III. Sio Siua Taukeiaho missed the Cowboys clash after being rested due to an ongoing hamstring problem.

Last week’s Knights team: 1. Kalyn Ponga 2. Dominic Young 3. Kurt Mann 4. Enari Tuala 5. Hymel Hunt 6. Jake Clifford 22. Phoenix Crossland 8. Jacob Saifiti 9. Jayden Brailey 15. David Klemmer 11. Tyson Frizell 12. Lachlan Fitzgibbon 13. Mitchell Barnett 14. Connor Watson 16. Josh King 17. Brodie Jones 18. Jack Johns

Team tips: Daniel Saifiti (ribs) and Mitchell Pearce (hamstring) both missed the Storm clash. No clear timeline has been set for when they both might return, but the Knights are battling on the injury front with Kalyn Ponga and David Klemmer both failing HIAs in the loss to Melbourne. Tex Hoy looms as the most likely man to play fullback while Sauaso Sue would come onto the bench.

REPORTS: Milford linked with Eels move | 01:41

Cowboys v Storm, 7.55pm, Queensland Country Bank Stadium

Last week’s Cowboys team: 3. Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow 2. Kyle Feldt 19. Javid Bowen 4. Connelly Lemuelu 5. Murray Taulagi 6. Scott Drinkwater 7. Tom Dearden 8. Francis Molo 9. Reece Robson 10. Jordan McLean 11. Shane Wright 12. Mitchell Dunn 13. Jason Taumalolo 14. Jake Granville 15. Tom Gilbert 16. Coen Hess 17. Peter Hola

Team tips: Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow will continue at fullback with Valentine Holmes out with a shoulder problem. Javid Bowen is out with an ACL, meaning Justin O’Neill will come back into the centres. Ben Hampton is also due back this week and could feature.

Last week’s Storm team: 1. Nicholas Hynes 2. George Jennings 3. Reimis Smith 4. Justin Olam 19. Dean Ieremia 6. Cameron Munster 7. Jahrome Hughes 8. Jesse Bromwich 9. Brandon Smith 15. Tui Kamikamica 11. Felise Kaufusi 12. Kenneath Bromwich 13. Dale Finucane 14. Aaron Booth 16. Chris Lewis 17. Aaron Pene 22. Jordan Grant

Team tips: The Storm will welcome Christian Welch and Josh Addo-Carr back after they featured in Origin III. They will come straight in for Dale Finucane (concussion) who Craig Bellamy said would be unlikely to play and George Jennings (PCL). Tui Kamikamica will start at lock with Welch into the front row alongside Jesse Bromwich. Nelson Asofa-Solomona is also back after serving a ban and will start on the bench. Aaron Booth suffered a dislocated shoulder and with Harry Grant (hamstring) still sidelined until Round 20 Tyson Smoothy (knee) could come back onto the bench. Craig Bellamy confirmed he wouldn’t rush Ryan Papenhuyzen back into action.

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Rabbitohs v Warriors, 3pm, Sunshine Coast Stadium

Last week’s Rabbitohs team: 20. Blake Taaffe 2. Alex Johnston 3. Dane Gagai 4. Campbell Graham 5. Taane Milne 6. Cody Walker 7. Adam Reynolds 8. Mark Nicholls 9. Damien Cook 10. Thomas Burgess 11. Keaon Koloamatangi 12. Jaydn Su’A 13. Cameron Murray 15. Liam Knight 16. Patrick Mago 17. Jacob Host 18. Braidon Burns

Team tips: Latrell Mitchell will return to the Souths’ starting side after being rested for the win over the Bulldogs. Alex Johnston’s hamstring is set to sideline him for the next few weeks, so expect Jaxson Paulo or Josh Mansour to come in for the Bunnies. Neither Campbell Graham nor Liam Knight came back on after they both failed HIAs in the Canterbury game, opening the door for Braidon Burns to shift into the starting side and Jed Cartwright to come onto the bench.

Last week’s Warriors team: 1. Reece Walsh 2. Dallin Watene-Zelezniak 3. Rocco Berry 20. Euan Aitken 4. Marcelo Montoya 5. Roger Tuivasa-Sheck 21. Chad Townsend 8. Addin Fonua-Blake 9. Wayde Egan 10. Matt Lodge 22. Tohu Harris 12. Bayley Sironen 13. Jazz Tevaga 6. Kodi Nikorima 11. Eliesa Katoa 14. Josh Curran 15. Leeson Ah Mau

Team tips: Tohu Harris’ season is over so expect either Eliesa Katoa to slot into the backrow. With Roger Tuivasa-Sheck failing a HIA and Wayde Egan (shoulder) unlikely to play, expect Sean O’Sullivan and Kodi Nikorima to fill in at five-eighth and hooker respectively. Adam Pompey will come into the mix in the backline with Rocco Berry sidelined with a hamstring problem.


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Sea Eagles v Tigers, 5.30pm, Suncorp Stadium

Last week’s Sea Eagles team: 5. Reuben Garrick 2. Jason Saab 3. Brad Parker 4. Morgan Harper 18. Moses Suli 12. Josh Schuster 6. Kieran Foran 8. Taniela Paseka 9. Lachlan Croker 10. Martin Taupau 11. Haumole Olakau’atu 15. Karl Lawton 13. Sean Keppie 14. Dylan Walker 16. Kurt De Luis 17. Toafofoa Sipley 21. Cade Cust

Team tips: Karl Lawton suffered a cork in the win over the Dragons, but with Daly Cherry-Evans returning alongside Tom Trbojevic, Josh Schuster will take Lawton’s back-row spot. Trbojevic will push Moses Suli out of the side with Reuben Garrick reverting to the wing, while Jake Trbojevic will force Sean Keppie to the bench if he returns as expected.

Last week’s Tigers team: 1. Daine Laurie 2. David Nofoaluma 3. Junior Pauga 19. Tommy Talau 5. Ken Maumalo 6. Adam Doueihi 7. Luke Brooks 8. Stefano Utoikamanu 9. Jacob Liddle 10. James Tamou 11. Luke Garner 12. Luciano Leilua 13. Thomas Mikaele 14. Joe Ofahengaue 15. Alex Twal 16. Tukimihia Simpkins 17. Moses Mbye

Team tips: No changes expected for the Tigers side that got a valuable win over the Broncos with Adam Doueihi set to continue at five-eighth and Moses Mbye on the bench. Junior Pauga made his NRL debut and with James Roberts stuck in a Covid hold and Joey Leilua left in Sydney he is unlikely to lose his spot.

Shambles in the Broncos Backline | 00:43

Panthers v Broncos, 7.35pm, Suncorp Stadium

Last week’s Panthers team: 1. Dylan Edwards 2. Charlie Staines 3. Stephen Crichton 4. Brent Naden 5. Brian To’o 6. Matt Burton 7. Tyrone May 8. Moses Leota 14. Mitch Kenny 10. James Fisher-Harris 11. Viliame Kikau 12. Kurt Capewell 13. Isaah Yeo 9. Apisai Koroisau 15. Scott Sorensen 16. Spencer Leniu 17. Liam Martin

Team tips: James Fisher-Harris (neck/ribs) is under an injury cloud, with Ivan Cleary unsure on his fitness after the win over the Warriors. If he was rested Matt Eisenhuth will likely come onto the bench. In better news for the Panthers, Cleary said Jarome Luai “should be back” while son Nathan wouldn’t be rushed back in.

Last week’s Broncos team: 1. Tesi Niu 2. Corey Oates 3. Kotoni Staggs 4. Herbie Farnworth 21. Jamayne Isaako 6. Tyson Gamble 7. Brodie Croft 8. Rhys Kennedy 9. Jake Turpin 10. Payne Haas 11. Alex Glenn 12. TC Robati 13. Kobe Hetherington 15. Thomas Flegler 16. Keenan Palasia 17. Jordan Riki 19. Jesse Arthars

Team tips: TC Robati suffered a bad cork in the loss to the Tigers as the Broncos’ left edge was torn apart time and again. If Kevin Walters opts to swing the axe on Brodie Croft, Albert Kelly could come straight back in to partner Tyson Gamble in the halves. Elsewhere, Xavier Coates, who was rested in the wake of Origin III, will take the place of Corey Oates or Jamayne Isaako.


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Dragons v Titans, 1.50pm, Cbus Super Stadium

Last week’s Dragons team: 1. Tyrell Sloan 2. Cody Ramsey 3. Jack Bird 4. Brayden Wiliame 5. Gerard Beale 6. Corey Norman 7. Ben Hunt 8. Blake Lawrie 9. Andrew McCullough 10. Jack de Belin 11. Josh Kerr 12. Tariq Sims 13. Jackson Ford 14. Poasa Faamausili 15. Jamayne Taunoa-Brown 16. Josh Mcguire 17. Billy Burns

Team tips: Matt Dufty, Tyrell Fuimaono and Kaide Ellis missed the Manly loss and will come in as the Dragons are forced to sit out four more players from Jack de Belin, Josh Kerr, Jack Bird, Gerard Beale, Blake Lawrie, Josh McGuire and Corey Norman who all attended Paul Vaughan’s BBQ. Zac Lomax and Daniel Alvaro remain in Sydney according to coach Anthony Griffin.

Last week’s Titans team: 1. Alexander Brimson 2. Phillip Sami 3. Brian Kelly 4. Patrick Herbert 5. Corey Thompson 6. Ashley Taylor 7. Jamal Fogarty 8. Jarrod Wallace 9. Erin Clark 16. Jaimin Jolliffe 11. Kevin Proctor 12. David Fifita 13. Tino Fa’asuamaleaui 10. Moeaki Fotuaika 14. Tyrone Peachey 15. Sam Lisone 17. Beau Fermor

Team tips: Kevin Proctor escaped a ban for a dangerous throw and will line up. Phillip Sami is sidelined with an ankle injury, while Jamal Fogarty has a broken finger. Tyrone Peachey could move into the halves or young rookie Toby Sexton looms as an option. Erin Clark is also under a cloud after hurting his elbow against the Eels.

Lewis loses his cool! | 00:39

Bulldogs v Sharks, 4.05pm, Cbus Super Stadium

Last week’s Bulldogs team: 1. Nick Meaney 2. Corey Allan 3. Will Hopoate 4. Aaron Schoupp 23. Jayden Okunbor 6. Lachlan Lewis 7. Jake Averillo 8. Jack Hetherington 9. Sione Katoa 10. Luke Thompson 11. Corey Waddell 21. Matt Doorey 12. Josh Jackson 14. Bailey Biondi-Odo 15. Dylan Napa 16. Ava Seumanufagai 20. Ofahiki Ogden

Team tips: Dylan Napa, Jack Hetherington and Lachlan Lewis all escaped bans from the Souths loss. Brad Deitz, Adam Elliott and Jeremy Marshall-King are all due to return in Round 19. Sione Katoa was impressive in the loss to Souths, while Bailey Biondi-Odo also played well so Trent Barrett will face a headache in choosing who to play at No. 9 and on the bench.

Last week’s Sharks team: 1. Will Kennedy 2. Sione Katoa 3. Connor Tracey 4. Jesse Ramien 5. Ronaldo Mulitalo 6. Braydon Trindall 7. Shaun Johnson 8. Aiden Tolman 9. Blayke Brailey 10. Aaron Woods 15. Siosifa Talakai 12. Teig Wilton 13. Toby Rudolf 14. Mawene Hiroti 11. Briton Nikora 16. Jack Williams 17. Braden Hamlin-Uele

Team tips: Aiden Tolman’s suspension opens the door for Royce Hunt to make his long-awaited return for the Sharks. It is not clear whether Will Chambers or Josh Dugan will be available for the clash with Dogs.

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