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Who to watch in NRL final trials

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 16/02/2017 Steve Zemek

WHO TO WATCH FOR IN FINAL NRL TRIALS:

Wests Tigers v North Queensland, Friday, 7pm (AEDT) at Campbelltown Stadium

* Paul Green hasn't named Kalyn Ponga but Kyle Feldt and Antonio Winterstein will have to perform to retain their spot for the Cowboys.

* With Matt Ballin (knee) missing, Matt McIlwrick will assume the Tigers' hooking role. Also keep an eye on youngster Moses Suli.

Canterbury v Melbourne, Saturday, 4.30pm (AEDT) at North Hobart Oval

* Kerrod Holland and Brenko Lee look set to start in the Dogs' back line this year but Marcelo Montoya has been named on the bench.

* With no Billy Slater, Young Tonumaipea starts at fullback for the Storm. Curtis Scott, who has been named in the centres, is tipped for a boom year.

Manly v Sydney Roosters, Saturday, 6.30pm (AEDT) at Central Coast Stadium

* With Brett Stewart, Jamie Lyon and Steve Matai retired, Jono Wright and Akuila Uate come into the Manly backline.

* Latrell Mitchell switches to the Roosters centres, Michael Gordon will start No.1 at while Blake Ferguson makes his expected move to the centres.

Penrith v Parramatta, Saturday, 7.10pm (AEDT) at Pepper Stadium

* With Dallin Watene-Zelezniak expected to miss the start of the Panthers' season, Tyrone Peachey comes in at centre. Te Maire Martin will start at No.6, pushing Bryce Cartwright to lock.

* Semi Radradra makes his return to the pitch for the Eels after a tumultuous off-season. Corey Norman (hamstring) is out with Troy Dargan in his place.

Canberra v Newcastle, Saturday, 7.30pm (AEDT) at Seiffert Oval, Queanbeyan.

* This is journeyman Dave Taylor's last chance to prove to the Raiders he is deserving of a contract. Big things are expected of centre Nick Cotric.

* Unheralded rookie Dylan Phythian has seemingly sewn up the Knights' No.1 spot while Brock Lamb will have first shot at the No.6 jumper.

Warriors v Gold Coast, Sunday, noon (AEDT) at Central Energy Trust Arena, Palmerston North

* With Kieran Foran not yet allowed to play, Ata Hingano is set to start the first two games of the year at No.6 for the Warriors.

* We will get our first look at the fancied Ash Taylor-Kane Elgey halves partnership for the Titans.

South Sydney v St George-Illawarra, Sunday, 4pm (AEDT) at ANZ Stadium

* Monster centre Siosifa Talakai gets a starting spot for the Rabbitohs while Alex Johnston gets the nod at No.1 with Greg Inglis missing. All eyes, of course, will be on new boy Robbie Farah.

* Josh McCrone and Jai Field are both vying for a halves spot at the Dragons.

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