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After last week's injury carnage there is a burgeoning batch of bargain halves available in NRL Fantasy right now, plus a few returning superstars for round 4.

Round 4 team news

Sea Eagles: Cash cow Josh Schuster (63) was an instant success in the left second-rower role, with two line breaks and a try assist plus 133 metres and 31 tackles. He's a great cash cow option, currently only available at half but on track to be made a dual-position HLF/EDG if he keeps a back-row spot through to round 6.

Daly Cherry-Evans (78) scored a try last week and is averaging 61 for the season, and any loss in kick metres with Kieran Foran's arrival is being offset by an increase in tackles as Manly find themselves defending for most of each game. Morgan Boyle replaces Toafofoa Sipley on the bench in their only change this week.

Panthers: Nathan Cleary is back, saving a lot of coaches from playing captain-roulette this week, with Matt Burton shifting to centre and Stephen Crichton to fullback for the injured Dylan Edwards (broken hand).

Mitch Kenny (49) is scoring nicely in place of the injured Api Koroisau at hooker while Paul Momirovski (38) also looks very solid as a cut-price centre. Cash cow Spencer Leniu (38) is averaging 130 metres in just over 30 minutes per game off the bench.

Bulldogs: Popular cheapie Jake Averillo is out of the 17 and looks like a sell, with Lachlan Lewis named at five-eighth. The Bulldogs do say Averillo is carrying an ankle injury so there's a return he returns to the side somewhere, although they also say Lewis has been promoted based on his Canterbury Cup form which suggests he'll keep the five-eighth role for the short term at least.

Lewis is capable of producing plenty of kick metres, which could hurt Kyle Flanagan's scoring.

Jeremy Marshall-King (foot, eight weeks) and Josh Jackson (suspended) are also out with Sione Katoa at hooker and Renouf Atoni at lock, while Jackson Topine and Dean Britt join the interchange. Corey Allan shifts to the wing with Nick Meaney at fullback.

Adam Elliott (70) has been easily the Bulldogs' best Fantasy scorer this year, while mid-range forward Corey Waddell (45) is proving a handy scorer in a big-minute edge role. Nick Cotric (26) had his first bad score of the season despite running for 183 metres, with -10 in demerits.

Rabbitohs: Unchanged. Souths blitzed the injury-hit Roosters last week but didn't really cash in on the Fantasy front with Dane Gagai (62) and Cody Walker (58) their only players to score more than 50. Latrell Mitchell has been on fire and leads the Dally M race but scored 43 including two try assists.

Cash cow forward Keaon Koloamatangi (37) started slow in that game but boosted his score with two turnover tackles to keep the price rises ticking along nicely.

Storm: Ryan Papenhuyzen is a welcome return at fullback for Nicho Hynes, while Nelson Asofa-Solomona is named to start after being shifted to the bench last week. Tom Eisenhuth is named to play despite fears of a rib cartilage injury.

Cameron Munster (81) had one of his big games against Penrith last week and could wreak havoc against the Broncos, while Brandon Smith (64) scored a try in his best game of 2021 so far.

Broncos: Payne Haas is back for his first game of 2021, joining the returning Matt Lodge in the front row. Kevin Walters has said Haas is set for reduced minutes this season so will be one to keep an eye on if his price drops later.

Tevita Pangai jnr is averaging 67 points per game but has been pushed back to the bench along with Tom Flegler. John Asiata also returns to the interchange with Rhys Kennedy, Ethan Bullemor and Tom Dearden dropping out.

Jake Turpin (66) repaid those who kept the faith last week while Anthony Milford (56) also bounced back after a dire score the week before.

Jamayne Isaako (70) scored a great try and kicked four goals in the big win over the Bulldogs. He's proven to be a handy scorer and moneymaker at the back so far this season.

Sharks: Briton Nikora (suspended) and Sione Katoa (MCL) are out but Wade Graham (HIA) and Will Kennedy (HIA) have been named. Mawene Hiroti comes into the side on the wing and Teig Wilton starts in the second row, with Braydon Trindall joining the bench.

Chad Townsend (42) is the only Shark with an average above 50 after three rounds and has jumped in value by $90k so far, while halves partner Matt Moylan (41) had his best score of the year against the Eels.

Cowboys: Todd Payten has wielded the axe with Esan Marsters, Jake Clifford, Mitch Dunn, Coen Hess and Reuben Cotter (concussion) replaced in the starting side by Connelly Lemuelu, Ben Hampton, Shane Wright, Ben Condon and Josh McGuire, with Hess moved back to the bench.

Slim pickings for Fantasy coaches here, with the only player with an average above 42 being skipper Michael Morgan – whose shoulder injury could reportedly end his career.

The only real positive last week was Val Holmes' switch from the wing to fullback, coinciding with a season-best score of 47 including five tackle breaks and a try assist.

Titans: Unchanged. David Fifita (92) was sensational on the left edge against the Cowboys and was the deciding factor in a lot of head-to-head league match-ups on the weekend, but could face a stiffer test against a solid Canberra side.

Tyrone Peachey (59) started at lock on Sunday and is a big chance of finishing as the highest-scoring "centre" in Fantasy this year, while Tino Fa'asuamaleaui (45) had his best score of the year but still has an average of 37 and a break-even in the mid-40s.

Raiders: Joe Tapine (ankle) and Curtis Scott (rib) are out with Sebastian Kris returning to the centres, Ryan Sutton shifting to lock and Dunamis Lui starting at prop. Hudson Young returns in the back row and Sia Soliola joins the bench.

Winger Jordan Rapana scored 66 without a try against the Warriors last round, with 221 run metres and eight tackle busts, while Bailey Simonsson (27) isn't losing value but really needs a try or two to get his price rises going.

Knights: Star To'a replaces towering teenager Dom Young in the backline, with Gehamat Shibasaki shifting from the wing to centre. Young remains a potential moneymaker in future but at this stage remains down the pecking order for outside backs at the club. Blake Green also returns via the bench.

Jayden Brailey's hot start to the season continued with 67 points last week and an average of 76 through three rounds, while Tyson Frizell (66 with a try) is also a chance of being an elite Fantasy edge forward in 2021.

Kalyn Ponga's return looks set to be delayed a couple of weeks in good news for Tex Hoy owners.

Dragons: Jack Bird (suspended) is replaced by Brayden Wiliame this week while Ben Hunt is sidelined with a fractured leg, giving Adam Clune a chance at halfback. Jackson Ford is the new name on the bench.

Andrew McCullough (71) is producing keeper-level scores so far this season, as is Zac Lomax, while cheapies Tui Fuimaono and Daniel Alvaro are both averaging 40 despite underwhelming scores last round.

Roosters: The Tricolours have been rocked by injuries to both halves, with Luke Keary (ACL) gone for the season and Lachlan Lam (MCL) also sidelined. That gives hotshot rookie Sam Walker his first taste of the NRL this week and he could be the buy of the week at $228k – although you can afford to wait and see how he performs.

Drew Hutchison also moves into the halves while Victor Radley will play his first game of the season from lock. Lindsay Collins (ankle/concussion) and Daniel Suluka-Fifita (suspended) are out with Matt Ikuvalu and Nat Butcher joining the bench.

Warriors: Marcelo Montoya replaces Peta Hiku (knee, round 7) in the centres and Bayley Sironen starts with Jazz Tevaga shifting back to the bench after starting at lock last week.

Roger Tuivasa-Sheck (88) had a glorious, match-winning performance against Canberra last week while Sean O'Sullivan (50) made 111 run metres and four tackle breaks to kick-start some fast price rises. He's still excellent value at $344k.

Wests Tigers: Unchanged. Daine Laurie (51) is one of the Fantasy buys of the season. Jacob Liddle is still making money despite an underwhelming 32 last week, and he's not playing the full 80 with Moses Mbye the bench utility.

Bench prop Stefano Utoikamanu is another genuine cash cow after scoring 48 (with his first try) against the Knights on Sunday.

Luke Brooks (45 last week) is averaging 50 for the season but may not be an elite scorer in the halves with his halves partner Adam Douihi (68 last week) starring against Newcastle. Joe Ofahengaue is approaching sell territory after scores of 31 and 27 and with a break-even in the mid-30s.

Eels: Mitch Moses has been named despite picking up a head knock last week while Ryan Matterson's return pushes Isaiah Papali'i back to a bench middle role, after he scored 51 in 74 minutes on an edge last weekend. Keegan Hipgrave drops out.

After two massive scores to start the year Reed Mahoney came back to earth a little with 53 last week – closer to what he's been producing in recent years. He still could be an elite Fantasy scorer this season though after having little tackling to do against the injury-hit Sharks. Tom Opacic has three scores in the mid-30s without a try and is flying under the radar as a value option in the centres.


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National Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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