The Annual NRL All Stars match is set to be held this Friday at the McDonald Jones Stadium in Newcastle. The match-up will see a team compiled of the globes brightest stars, taking on some of the most talented Aboriginal players in the game.

Last Time Out

The 2016 NRL All Stars match was the first held between the Indigenous All Stars, and the newly formed World All Stars. The fresh look of the World All Stars was too much for the Indigenous, who went down 12 points to 8 at Suncorp Stadium. Converted tries to Konrad Hurrell and Semi Radradra proved to be enough as Jamie Soward missed both his shots at goal. Had Soward made his conversion attempts, the game would have been locked at 12 points apiece. Indigenous fans need not to worry about any more of Jamie Soward antics, as Johnathan Thurston and Ashley Taylor make up a sensei and grasshopper halves pairing.

Key Battle

The battle of the back-row is one that has many fans licking their lips in anticipation. The World All Stars trio of premiership winning forward Gavin Cooper and young stars Bryce Cartwright and Tepai Moeroa will have them going forward all night. The skills on display from Cartwright, paired with the pure grit and determination of his partners in crime, will be hard to contain for the Indigenous side. Speaking of the Indigenous All Stars, their back-row reads a more versatile combination of Joel Thompson, Wade Graham, and Kyle Turner. All very experienced customers, especially in this format, if the Indigenous side wants to be successful this year, than these 3 men will be key.

Prediction

The two sides have fought out some brilliant matches over the past few years. On paper the Indigenous side looks too strong, and with passion behind them they should bring it home. Not to count out the World All Stars, who will have the chance to show off some talent of their own, and just might come up with the win. – Indigenous All Stars by 14

Squads

World All Stars: 2 David Mead, 19 Akuila Uate, 3 Gerard Beale, 4 Jarrod Croker, 5 Nene Macdonald, 6 Mitchell Moses, 7 Moses Mbye, 8 Jordan McLean, 9 Jake Friend, 10 Reagan Campbell-Gillard, 11 Gavin Cooper, 12 Bryce Cartwright, 13 Tepai Moeroa. Interchange: 14 Damien Cook, 15 Paul Vaughan, 16 Sam Lisone, 17 Mitch Aubusson, 18 Sione Mata’utia, 20 Jordan Turner, 21 Chris McQueen.

Indigenous All Stars: 1 Jack Wighton, 2 Blake Ferguson, 3 Greg Inglis, 4 Jack Bird, 5 Dane Gagai, 6 Johnathan Thurston, 7 Ash Taylor, 8 Ryan James, 9 Nathan Peats, 10 Andrew Fifita, 11 Joel Thompson, 12 Wade Graham, 13 Kyle Turner. Interchange: 14 Leilani Latu, 15 Latrell Mitchell, 16 Aidan Sezer, 17 Tyrone Peachey, 18 Tyrone Roberts, 19 Bevan French, 20 Chris Smith.