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The Rabbitohs are riding a four-game winning streak thanks in large part to the NRL's second-hottest attack and next in their sights is a Wests Tigers team that just coughed up 34 points to the previously win-less Cowboys. 

The Rabbitohs will be even more potent with gun pivot Cody Walker returning from suspension, allowing Benji Marshall to slip back into his super sub role.

Powering the Rabbitohs' offensive juggernaut is fullback Latrell Mitchell, who has taken his game to another level this season. Of particular note last Thursday against Brisbane was that Mitchell, often critiqued for his work-rate, was demanding the ball right up until the siren.  

Wests Tigers, meanwhile, will take a defensive ranking of 13th into the clash  - ahead of only the Cowboys, Sea Eagles and Bulldogs - having conceded an average of 35 points in their four losses.

Rabbitohs v Wests Tigers

The rundown

Team news

Rabbitohs: Liam Knight (concussion) will make his first appearance of the season and replaces Patrick Mago on the bench, with Hame Sele and Troy Dargan dropping off the extended bench 24 hours before kick-off.

"I'm pretty sure he’s close to coming back," Jai Arrow told NRL.com of Knight on Wednesday.

"He actually did his first full [contact] session where he was in there. He was definitely enjoying himself, he was taking some carries and he was into the boys."

Cody Walker will return from suspension to reclaim the No.6 jumper, pushing Benji Marshall back to the bench. Playmaker Dean Hawkins, who debuted off the interchange against Brisbane last week, was unavailable due to a cut suffered post-match that required 15 stitches.

Fullback Latrell Mitchell has scored six tries in seven games against the Tigers.

Wests Tigers: The Tigers will line up as named on Tuesday. Jake Simpkin will finally get his chance to start at dummy-half with Jacob Liddle dropping out of the side.

Asu Kepaoa has replaced Joey Leilua after the centre, a late addition to the team for the clash with North Queensland, failed a HIA after lasting just 13 minutes. 

Former Eel Stefano Utoikamanu, who has looked better each week, will swap places with prop Zane Musgrove while Tom Amone is the new face in the reserves. 

Liddle and Tom Amone dropped out of the initial 21-man squad on Friday. Alexander Seyfarth is the 18th man.

Wests Tigers have conceded 20 points or more in 15 consecutive games.

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

Last updated:

Key match-up

Adam Reynolds v Luke Brooks: The drums are beating loudly about Brooks' future so aiming up against one of the competition's form No.7's would be to the play-maker's benefit. Reynolds is the NRL's third-highest point-scorer in 2021 and has three tries to his credit.

Brooks has yet to cross the stripe and has only forced one line dropout to the Rabbitoh's four but he has been more productive than Reynolds in try assists (7-1), line-break assists (3-0) and offloads (6-1).

Stat attack

Amidst all the misery there is one bright spot for Wests Tigers with the club leading the competition in offloads (65). They sit one ahead of last season's best offloaders, Parramatta, with their high-flying rivals Souths (39) languishing in 13th place, 26 behind their struggling rivals. 

 

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