Wests Tigers will look to further consolidate their spot inside the top eight when they take on the Brisbane Broncos this Friday night at Leichhardt Oval for their Round 10 clash.
Set for their first game at the venue in front of fans all season, Michael Maguire's side will be determined to bounce back from two close defeats to the Panthers and Rabbitohs in recent weeks and ensure they stay entrenched in a finals position.
Brisbane come in to the contest off the back of a tough run of results, although they did break through last week for a win over the Bulldogs, and will certainly be up for the contest this week with a host of players set to return.
Anthony Siebold's side haven't played at the iconic suburban ground since 2003, while Wests Tigers are also still searching their first Leichhardt Oval win of the season, having gone down to Newcastle prior to the competition shut-down.
Off the back of consecutive defeats, Maguire has rung the changes for Friday's game with Billy Walters named to start at five-eighth alongside Benji Marshall — replacing last week's halves in Josh Reynolds (suspended) and Luke Brooks.
Brooks is named on the bench alongside Sam McIntyre and Chris McQueen, both of whom did not feature in last week's defeat to South Sydney.
Russell Packer also starts up front for his first game since Round 5 — replacing Oliver Clark — while Tommy Talau's return from a hamstring injury is a key inclusion for Wests Tigers as he replaces Reece Hoffman on the wing.
Date — Friday, July 17
Time — 7:55pm AEST
Venue — Leichhardt Oval
TV, RADIO AND LIVE STREAM INFORMATION
TV — Live via Channel 9, FOX League (Ch.502)
Radio — AM 702 ABC Grandstand, AM 873 2GB, FM 104.9 Triple M
Live Stream — 9NOW, Foxtel Go, KAYO, NRL Digital Pass and Watch NRL (int.)
NRL.com preview Broncos clash
LATEST TEAM NEWS
Wests Tigers — Tommy Talau (hamstring) returns on the wing in place of Reece Hoffman, while Chris Lawrence will remain in the centres with Joey Leilua suspended. Benji Marshall starts in the halves with Josh Reynolds also facing two weeks on the sidelines, while Billy Walters starts in place of Luke Brooks. Russell Packer, Sam McIntyre and Chris McQueen also all return to the side — the latter for his first game of the season.
Brisbane Broncos — David Fifita, Kotoni Staggs and Matt Lodge have all not been named by Coach Anthony Siebold. Joe Ofahengaue is back available from suspension and will take the place of Alex Glenn (knee), with Ben Te'o set to start. Brisbane were dealt another late blow with Herbie Farnworth ruled out in the side's final training run, with Richie Kennear to instead start at centre.
Head to Head — Wests Tigers ($1.50), Brisbane Broncos ($2.55)
Line — Wests Tigers -5.5 ($2.00), Brisbane Broncos -5.5 ($2.00)
Odds correct as of 3:00pm, July 14. 18+ only, gamble responsibly.
Overall — Played 29, Brisbane 21, Wests Tigers 6
At Leichhardt Oval — Played 1, Brisbane 38 def. Wests Tigers 6 (2003, Rd. 8)
Last Time They Met — Wests Tigers 22 def. Brisbane 16 (2019, Rd.5)
Referee — Adam Gee
Touch Judges — Ziggy Przeklasa-Adamski and Tim Alouani-Roby
Review Officials — Bryan Norrie and Jared Maxwell