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Wests Tigers Coach Michael Maguire has made several changes to his side ahead of Saturday’s Round 6 game against the South Sydney Rabbitohs at Stadium Australia.

Highly-rated young hooker Jake Simpkin has been named to start and make his NRL debut — becoming Wests Tigers Player #242 — with Jacob Liddle dropping back to the reserves.

Asu “AJ” Kepaoa will also return to the side after a strong performance in the Knock-On Effect NSW Cup competition, replacing Joey Leilua who is ruled out following a concussion sustained against the Cowboys.

Young forward Stefano Utoikamanu has earned the first start of his career following a strong start to the season and moves into the run-on side in place of Zane Musgrove. Joe Ofahengaue also retains his starting spot on the right edge with Luke Garner set to come off the bench after a good performance last week.

New Wests Tigers recruit Tom Amone, who only joined the club last month, has been included on the reserves list after strong performances for the club’s Knock-On Effect NSW Cup side, Western Suburbs Magpies.

For the Rabbitohs, Cody Walker returns from suspension — pushing Benji Marshall back to the bench — while Liam Knight and Jaxson Paulo have been included among the reserves and could come into contention later on in the week.

Saturday will see a triple-header of rugby league action at Stadium Australia with the club’s reserve-grade (12:40pm) and Jersey Flegg (3:00pm) sides both featuring prior to the NRL kickoff at 5:30pm AEST.

Team Lists

Backs

  • Fullback for Rabbitohs is number 1 Latrell Mitchell
    Fullback for Wests Tigers is number 1 Daine Laurie
  • Winger for Rabbitohs is number 2 Alex Johnston
    Winger for Wests Tigers is number 2 David Nofoaluma
  • Centre for Rabbitohs is number 3 Dane Gagai
    Centre for Wests Tigers is number 3 James Roberts
  • Centre for Rabbitohs is number 4 Campbell Graham
    Centre for Wests Tigers is number 4 Asu Kepaoa
  • Winger for Rabbitohs is number 5 Josh Mansour
    Winger for Wests Tigers is number 5 Tommy Talau
  • Five-Eighth for Rabbitohs is number 6 Cody Walker
    Five-Eighth for Wests Tigers is number 6 Adam Doueihi
  • Halfback for Rabbitohs is number 7 Adam Reynolds
    Halfback for Wests Tigers is number 7 Luke Brooks

Forwards

  • Prop for Rabbitohs is number 8 Thomas Burgess
    Prop for Wests Tigers is number 8 James Tamou
  • Hooker for Rabbitohs is number 9 Damien Cook
    Hooker for Wests Tigers is number 9 Jake Simpkin
  • Prop for Rabbitohs is number 10 Tevita Tatola
    Prop for Wests Tigers is number 10 Stefano Utoikamanu
  • 2nd Row for Rabbitohs is number 11 Jacob Host
    2nd Row for Wests Tigers is number 11 Joe Ofahengaue
  • 2nd Row for Rabbitohs is number 12 Jaydn Su'A
    2nd Row for Wests Tigers is number 12 Luciano Leilua
  • Lock for Rabbitohs is number 13 Cameron Murray
    Lock for Wests Tigers is number 13 Alex Twal

Interchange

  • Interchange for Rabbitohs is number 14 Benji Marshall
    Interchange for Wests Tigers is number 14 Moses Mbye
  • Interchange for Rabbitohs is number 15 Mark Nicholls
    Interchange for Wests Tigers is number 15 Luke Garner
  • Interchange for Rabbitohs is number 17 Jai Arrow
    Interchange for Wests Tigers is number 16 Thomas Mikaele
  • Interchange for Rabbitohs is number 19 Liam Knight
    Interchange for Wests Tigers is number 17 Zane Musgrove

Reserves

  • Reserve for Rabbitohs is number 16 Patrick Mago
    Reserve for Wests Tigers is number 19 Alex Seyfarth

Match Officials

  • Referee: Gerard Sutton
  • Touch Judge: Liam Kennedy
  • Touch Judge: Jon Stone
  • Senior Review Official: Alan Shortall

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