Jem Nash previews a massive round six clash between the Penrith Panthers and Melbourne Storm.
The Panthers will be disappointed after giving up a 10-0 lead against the Eels last week, but aside from the five minute period in which they gave up three tries, they were arguably the better side. They will once again be tested against a dangerous Storm outfit who have won two on the trot.
The Storm bounced back from a disappointing loss to the Raiders in round three, producing two strong wins against the Rabbitohs and Knights over the last two weeks. Cameron Smith was at his absolute best in last week’s victory, producing two try assists and a perfect night of goal kicking, leading his side perfectly around the park.
1 Dylan Edwards 2 Josh Mansour 3 Dean Whare 4 Stephen Crichton 5 Brian To’o 6 Jarome Luai 7 Nathan Cleary 8 James Tamou 9 Apisai Koroisau 10 James Fisher-Harris 11 Viliame Kikau 12 Liam Martin 13 Isaah Yeo 14 Matt Burton 15 Zane Tetevano 16 Moses Leota 17 Billy Burns 18 Mitch Kenny 19 Brent Naden 20 Jack Hetherington 21 Caleb Aekins
Dylan Edwards returns from injury at fullback, pushing Caleb Aekins out of the side. Kurt Capewell is set to miss over two months with a knee injury, with Liam Martin taking his spot in the second row and Billy Burns coming onto the bench.
1 Ryan Papenhuyzen 2 Suliasi Vunivalu 3 Justin Olam 4 Brenko Lee 5 Josh Addo-Carr 6 Cameron Munster 7 Ryley Jacks 8 Jesse Bromwich 9 Cameron Smith 10 Christian Welch 11 Felise Kaufusi 12 Kenneath Bromwich 13 Dale Finucane 14 Brandon Smith 15 Tino Faasuamaleaui 16 Tom Eisenhuth 17 Nelson Asofa-Solomona 18 Max King 19 Marion Seve 20 Jahrome Hughes 21 Paul Momirovski
The Storm are unchanged, but Brandon Smith could once again move to the starting side after replacing Christian Welch on game day the last two weeks.
The Storm have had the wood over the Panthers in recent times, winning 18 of their past 20 meetings.
BATTLE TO WATCH
Cameron Smith v Apisai Koroisau
Cameron Smith may be nearing the end of his career, but there is no doubt he is still one of the best players in the NRL. He comes up against Apisai Koroisau this week, who is a major factor in the Panthers currently sitting in the top four. Koroisau provides a constant threat out of dummy half, while Smith is coming off a dominant performance last week.
Storm by eight.
Date: Friday, June 19
Venue: Campbelltown Stadium