NRL TEAMS - 2021 Round 21
2 days ago | LeagueUnlimited Media
Kicking off Super Saturday is a mismatch contest between the top four South Sydney Rabbitohs and the finals chasing New Zealand Warriors on the Sunshine Coast.
The Rabbitohs seem to be stuck in their own form of purgatory in this 2021 season. They are very good but remain a step below the two class sides in Penrith and Melbourne - shown in their heavy losses to both - but they account for the rest of the competition in easy fashion.
Souths attack can be at times frightening and cut through teams at will shown by hitting 30+ in ten of their wins this season.
Losing Alex Johnston to an injury will be a blow, but like a good SNES game it will be plug and play with Josh Mansour on the wing this weekend.
For the Rabbitohs - they should stroll to the win this weekend without much fanfare but their true test will come closer to September. Can Wayne Bennett head off into the sunset with a Premiership or will it be another year of Preliminary Final heartbreak for the famous club.
Looking at the Warriors to quote the great philosopher John Cena - "their time is now" in their quest for the top eight.
The nomadic side are four points outside eighth currently occupied by the Sharks and will need a mighty effort to wedge that gap.
Not helping matters is the huge injury toll for the Warriors. They finished last weekend's loss to the Panthers without a bench and now might have lost Tohu Harris for the season.
Roger Tuivasa-Sheck is another big out which piles pressure on the inexperienced Reece Walsh and another new halves pairing in Kodi Nikorima and Chad Townsend who come up against one of the most established combos.
One bright spot for the Warriors might be their forward pack. Matt Lodge took the Panthers pack on head-on last week and was a star while Addin Fonua-Blake takes the captaincy.
Fonua-Blake has been a consistent meter eater for the Warriors and he might have to do his best Greg Jennings impression and put the team on his back to get anything from this contest.
Last meeting: Round 6 2020 - Rabbitohs 40 Warriors 12
Who to watch: Back after a successful origin series, Rabbitohs fullback Latrell Mitchell now has his eyes set on bringing some premiership glory to the famous myrtle and cardinal.
Mitchell is a destructive force at the back and his understanding with Cody Walker and Adam Reynolds - added to his wonderful origin will make him a must watch on Saturday night.
The halves pairings for the Warriors in 2021 has been a turnstyle, switching almost every week. Due to Roger Tuivasa-Sheck's injury, now Kodi Nikorima is back in the six jersey.
The former Bronco will look to use his running game to open up the Rabbitohs defense which might take some pressure off Chad Townsend and give the Warriors some more structure against one of the toughest teams in the NRL.
The favourite: The Bunnies usually make light work of the lower-ranked sides and are expected to do so again this weekend.
My tip: A comfortable win for the home side in this one. South Sydney by 30.
1. Latrell Mitchell 2. Josh Mansour 3. Dane Gagai 14. Taane Milne 5. Jaxson Paulo 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. Jacob Host 16. Patrick Mago 17. Jai Arrow 18. Braidon Burns 20. Blake Taaffe
1. Reece Walsh 2. Dallin Watene-Zelezniak 3. Adam Pompey 4. Euan Aitken 5. Marcelo Montoya 6. Kodi Nikorima 7. Chad Townsend 8. Addin Fonua-Blake 9. Jazz Tevaga 10. Matt Lodge 11. Jack Murchie 12. Bayley Sironen 13. Josh Curran 14. Taniela Otukolo 15. Eliesa Katoa 16. Bunty Afoa 17. Leeson Ah Mau 20. Edward Kosi
Referees: Chris Butler; Sideline Officials: Drew Oultram, Ziggy Przeklasa-Adamski; Video Referees: Grant Atkins;