MATCH PREVIEW: Eels v Bulldogs, Round 17
The Parramatta Eels take on the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs at ANZ Stadium on Thursday 29 June in Round 17 of the NRL Telstra Premiership.
After a victory over the St. George Illawarra Dragons in Round 15, followed by the bye last week, Blue & Gold Head Coach Brad Arthur has made a handful of changes to his side for the clash.
Hooker Cameron King will make his Blue & Gold Club debut, replacing an injured Kaysa Pritchard whilst David Gower has been named on the bench in place of an injured Beau Scott.
Kenny Edwards maintains his starting spot, as Tepai Meoroa is named on the bench alongside Gower, Suaia Matagi, Will Smith, Marata Niukore, Siosaia Vave, Nathan Davis and John Folau.
For the Bulldogs, Head Coach Des Hasler has been forced to make a handful of chanced to his side that suffered a disappointing 21-14 loss to the Warriors at Mt Smart Stadium last week, with skipper James Graham and back-rower Greg Eastwood unavailable with injury.
Sam Kasiano moves into the starting side with Francis Tualau and Matt Frawley joining the bench.
Origin winger Brett Morris returns in place of Kerrod Holland.
The Eels enter this clash off the bye, however had three victories over the past four weeks previous.
The Bulldogs enter this clash off a loss following their bye, and had just one win in their previous five weeks.
Historically, the Bulldogs hold a head to head advantage over the Blue & Gold, however the Eels came away victors in both times they met in 2016, including a 20-12 victory in their last clash which occurred in Round 9, 2016.
Kick off from ANZ Stadium is at 7:50pm.
Match Details: Parramatta Eels v Canterbury Bankstown Bulldogs at ANZ Stadium on Thursday 29 June. Kick off at 7:50pm.
Televised: Channel Nine – Live from 7.30pm. Fox Sports – Live from 7.30pm.
The History: Played 140; Eels 60; Bulldogs 75, Drawn 5.
The venue shouldn't be an issue with both teams calling ANZ home these days so the fact this is an Eels home game shouldn't mean too much. The Eels have won two straight against the Dogs but the blue and whites were victorious in nine of 10 meetings prior to that.
Parramatta Eels squad: 1. Clint Gutherson 2. Semi Radradra 3. Michael Jennings 4. Brad Takairangi 5. Bevan French 6. Corey Norman 7. Mitch Moses 8. Daniel Alvaro 9. Cameron King 10. Tim Mannah (c) 11. Manu Ma’u 12. Kenny Edwards 13. Nathan Brown
Interchange: 14. David Gower 15. Tepai Moeroa 16. Suaia Matagi 17. Will Smith 18. Marata Niukore 19. Siosaia Vave 20. Nathan Davis 21. John Folau
Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs squad: 1. Will Hopoate 2. Brett Morris 3. Josh Morris 4. Chase Stanley 5. Marcelo Montoya 6. Josh Reynolds 7. Moses Mbye 8. Aiden Tolman (c) 9. Michael Lichaa 10. Sam Kasiano 11. Josh Jackson 12. Adam Elliott 13. David Klemmer
Interchange: 14. Raymond Faitala-Mariner 15. Danny Fualalo 16. Francis Tualau 17. Matt Frawley 19. Andy Saunders 20. Kerrod Holland 21. Asipeli Fine 23. Brenko Lee
Match officials: Referee: Henry Perenara; Assistant Referee: Dave Munro; Touch judges: Ziggy Przeklasa-Adamski and Jeff Younis; Review Official: Luke Patten; Senior RO: Bernard Sutton.