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Wests Tigers have played all but one team in the competition so far this season, leaving Cronulla Sutherland Sharks as their final unique opponent in 2021.

In fact, these two sides will face off for the first time in 448 days when they meet on Saturday afternoon — the longest current drought between fixtures in the NRL.

And this clash comes at no better time with Wests Tigers and Sharks locked on 18 competition points — just one win outside the top eight — and fighting for a spot in the finals.

Wests Tigers will enter the match high on confidence following back-to-back wins over the Bulldogs and Cowboys — and now they’ll be looking for three-straight victories for the first time since 2018.

However, Michael Maguire’s men will have to play without Thomas Mikaele and Jacob Liddle after they both copped one game suspensions for a crusher tackle during the win against the Cowboys in Round 22.

James Tamou and James Roberts were also both late scratchings on Friday as the club confirmed the duo would miss the match with injury.

Their omission sees Joe Ofahengaue shift into the run-on side, while it's an inexperienced bench for Michael Maguire's side — Kelma Tuilagi (3), Tuki Simpkins (4), Billy Walters (11) and Tom Amone (14) set to feature.

The match was originally scheduled to be played at Scully Park in Tamworth, however a relocation to Queensland due to COVID-19 has seen the fixture shifted to Browne Park in Rockhampton.

It will be the first ever NRL match played at the venue — giving the Rockhampton locals an opportunity to watch live first grade footy.

UPDATED TEAM NEWS

Wests Tigers: Jacob Liddle (suspension), James Roberts (achilles), Thomas Mikaele (suspension) and James Tamou (foot) are all out. Tom Amone, Tuki Simpkins, Kelma Tuilagi and Billy Walters are named on the bench, while Jake Simpkin and Joe Ofahengaue both move into the starting side.

Sharks: Matt Moylan will make his return from a hamstring injury with Luke Metcalf set to start at five-eighth and Connor Tracey shifting to the centres. Mawene Hiroti and Will Chambers drop out of the squad originally named during the week.

Team Lists

Backs

  • Fullback for Wests Tigers is number 1 Moses Mbye
    Fullback for Sharks is number 1 William Kennedy
  • Winger for Wests Tigers is number 2 David Nofoaluma
    Winger for Sharks is number 2 Sione Katoa
  • Centre for Wests Tigers is number 3 Tommy Talau
    Centre for Sharks is number 4 Jesse Ramien
  • Centre for Wests Tigers is number 4 Michael Chee Kam
    Centre for Sharks is number 6 Connor Tracey
  • Winger for Wests Tigers is number 5 Ken Maumalo
    Winger for Sharks is number 5 Ronaldo Mulitalo
  • Five-Eighth for Wests Tigers is number 6 Adam Doueihi
    Five-Eighth for Sharks is number 14 Luke Metcalf
  • Halfback for Wests Tigers is number 7 Luke Brooks
    Halfback for Sharks is number 7 Braydon Trindall

Forwards

  • Prop for Wests Tigers is number 8 Stefano Utoikamanu
    Prop for Sharks is number 8 Toby Rudolf
  • Hooker for Wests Tigers is number 9 Jake Simpkin
    Hooker for Sharks is number 9 Blayke Brailey
  • Prop for Wests Tigers is number 14 Joe Ofahengaue
    Prop for Sharks is number 10 Aaron Woods
  • 2nd Row for Wests Tigers is number 11 Shawn Blore
    2nd Row for Sharks is number 11 Briton Nikora
  • 2nd Row for Wests Tigers is number 12 Luciano Leilua
    2nd Row for Sharks is number 12 Siosifa Talakai
  • Lock for Wests Tigers is number 13 Alex Twal
    Lock for Sharks is number 13 Jack Williams

Interchange

  • Interchange for Wests Tigers is number 15 Kelma Tuilagi
    Interchange for Sharks is number 15 Braden Hamlin-Uele
  • Interchange for Wests Tigers is number 16 Tukimihia Simpkins
    Interchange for Sharks is number 16 Teig Wilton
  • Interchange for Wests Tigers is number 18 Billy Walters
    Interchange for Sharks is number 17 Billy Magoulias
  • Interchange for Wests Tigers is number 19 Tom Amone
    Interchange for Sharks is number 18 Matt Moylan

Reserves

  • Reserve for Wests Tigers is number 21 Zac Cini
    Reserve for Sharks is number 20 Kai O'Donnell

Match Officials

  • Referee: Gerard Sutton
  • Touch Judge: Dave Munro
  • Touch Judge: Belinda Sharpe
  • Senior Review Official: Grant Atkins

Last updated:

MATCH DETAILS

Date — Saturday, 21st August, 2021

Time — 3:00pm AEST

Venue — Browne Park, Rockhampton

TV, RADIO AND LIVE STREAM INFORMATION

TV — FOX League (Ch.502)

Radio — AM 702 ABC Grandstand, FM 104.9 Triple M

Live Stream — KAYO Sports, Watch NRL (int.)

LATEST NEDS ODDS

Head-to-Head — Wests Tigers ($2.50), Cronulla Sutherland Sharks ($1.55)

Line — Wests Tigers +4.5 ($1.90), Cronulla Sutherland Sharks -4.5 ($1.90)

Odds correct as of 9:00am, Tuesday, 17th August. 18+ only, Gamble responsibly.

Moses Mbye discusses decision to leave Wests Tigers

HISTORY

Head-to-Head — Played 33, Wests Tigers 18, Cronulla Sharks 13, Draw 2

At Brown Park — Yet to play at the venue

Last Time They Met —Wests Tigers 28 def. Cronulla Sharks 16 (Rd.3, 2020)

MATCH OFFICIALS

Referee — Gerard Sutton

Touch Judges — Dave Munro & Belinda Sharpe

Bunker Review Official — Grant Atkins

Nofoaluma: 'The focus is on us'