Today Rob Crosby looks at the South Sydney Rabbitohs ahead of season 2017. Can they ascend the #NRL ...
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Defending premiers Penrith have named the same line-up that stormed home against Canberra last Friday night to take on the New Zealand Warriors at Ericsson Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
Centre Ryan Girdler has recovered from illness but won?t travel to New Zealand, instead opting to make his return against the Sydney Roosters in the grand final replay on Friday, April 2.
Ironically, like the grand final, next weekend?s match against the Roosters is preceded by a clash with the Warriors, the team Penrith defeated last year to reach the season decider.
Like last year, the Panthers will be hoping to collect the Warriors/Roosters double, while the Warriors will be aiming for revenge.
The Panthers also defeated the Warriors comfortably in a pre-season trial match earlier this year.
Meanwhile, the Panthers have today announced a new major sponsor for their junior league.
Cabe, a company started by Panthers legend Lou Zivanovic, have signed on to sponsor one of the game?s biggest junior league areas for the next three years.
"It is quite unique ... for grass roots rugby league to have the capacity and profile to attract a major sponsor," said Panthers Junior League CEO Don Feltis.
"This major sponsorship has already had a positive impact on morale and interest throughout the district and will provide the platform for the junior league to further extend and develop its operations and move confidently into the future."
Panthers team v Warriors: Rhys Wesser, Amos Roberts, Luke Lewis, Paul Whatuira, Luke Rooney, Preston Campbell, Craig Gower (c), Joel Clinton, Luke Priddis, Martin Lang, Joe Galuvao, Tony Puletua, Trent Waterhouse. Interchange: Ben Ross, Shane Rodney, Luke Swain, Danny Galea.