Lawrence fit, Parcell to be monitored
Manly prop Brenton Lawrence has shaken off a hip strain that forced him out of the side's Round 7 loss to Parramatta while hooker Matt Parcell continues to manage a hamstring but should be ok to face Newcastle on Anzac Day.
While Parcell was withdrawn from a scheduled media appearance on Wednesday morning as he got some extra physio on a hammy tweak that forced his late withdrawal from the Eels game, Lawrence said he was fully fit and raring to go.
"It was just my adductor, it was giving me a bit of grief so we thought we'd let it rest," Lawrence told NRL.com.
"We're lucky we've got that many players there [who can fill those spots] so we thought we'd just rest it."
Lawrence said Barrett had the luxury of handing young prop Addin Fonua-Blake a debut with the likes of Josh Starling, Darcy Lussick and Siosaia Vave are all jostling for first grade spots alongside established middle forwards like Nate Myles, Marty Taupau, Jake Trbojevic. However Lawrence didn't view the week off as a setback, insisting Barrett was simply doing what was best for the team.
"As far as fighting for spots – I don't know. He (Barrett) is lucky he could do it and that's all it really was, we managed it. Everything he's doing is his call and for the betterment of the team."
Lawrence said the muscle strain had been giving him some minor trouble for a couple of games.
"Just a couple of weeks, it sort of came up and then it was like, we'll see how much it's annoying or if we persist with it," he said.
The club said Parcell was not thought to be in any doubt for Monday's Anzac Day clash at Newcastle, but the Sea Eagles have named utility forward Blake Leary as 18th man with Lewis Brown also on the bench in the event the pair are required for dummy half duties.
Last week's debutant Fonua-Blake has retained a bench spot with Lawrence's return instead displacing Josh Starling from the NRL team. Winger Brayden Wiliame rejoins the top grade in place of Jorge Taufua (collarbone, six weeks) in red hot form, having scored six tries in his past two games for Manly's Intrust Super Premiership side.
Wiliame's recent form drew praise from his fellow flanker, Tom Trbojevic.
"He's been playing really good. I watched his games the last two weeks and he's been killing it," Trbojevic told NRL.com.
"His form in the NSW Cup has helped him get a first grade spot and he'll be doing his best out there on Monday."