Unavailable: Nathan Brown, Jarryd Hayne, Tony Williams, Kaysa Pritchard, Tim Mannah, Kenny Edwards
Parramatta missed a huge chance to finally move up the NRL ladder last week but a late Canterbury try ensured they remained rooted to the bottom. Clint Gutherson’s air-shot allowed Adam Elliott to ground the ball for a 72nd minute try that ultimately won the game for the Bulldogs as the Eels went down 20-12.
Kenny Edwards has been stood down due to off-field disciplinary reasons with the forward set to appear in court for a traffic violation. Manu Ma’u will start at lock with Beau Scott starting in the back-row. Cameron King will start in the hooking role with Will Smith dropping to the bench whilst Marata Niukore will make his debut.
The Eels made 377 tackles against the Bulldogs, 63 tackles more than their opponents. That is too big a difference, especially in tight games like last week. It’s a small insight into why Parramatta have struggled this season with them making a league high 3,477 tackles so far.
Unavailable: Nathaniel Roache, Leivaha Pulu, Shaun Johnson, Roger Tuivasa-Sheck
The Warriors were left scoreless for the first time in New Zealand since 2009 as the Roosters were comprehensive winners last week. The Warriors couldn’t cope with the loss of key men and met a white-hot Roosters outfit as they went down 0-32.
If missing Shaun Johnson wasn’t bad enough for the Warriors, they must now do without captain Roger Tuivasa-Sheck after he was a late withdrawal through injury. Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad will start in his place. In better news, Isaac Luke returns with Karl Lawton dropping to the reserves. Sam Lisone drops off the bench with Chris Satae taking his place.
The Warriors bounced back from their last big defeat against the Storm with a win over the Tigers the following week. They will be keen to repeat that but missing their two most creative players in Tuivasa-Sheck and Johnson will be difficult to overcome.
Parramatta have been presented with a great chance to turn over New Zealand Warriors this week as they will come up against the Kiwi side without two of their star men. Shaun Johnson and Roger Tuivasa-Sheck will both be absent with injuries with the Warriors naturally looking a lot weaker as a result. The Eels were beaten against the Bulldogs late on last week whilst the Warriors were comprehensively beaten by the Roosters as they failed to post a single point. Backing up after that performance will be tough without their go-to playmakers and the Eels can capitalise as on that.