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In a match that's become a highlight of the NRL calendar, Sydney's traditional Anzac Day clash is back for another year.

Both clubs were beaten last weekend but still find themselves in the top eight.

The Roosters have been hit hard by injuries in 2021, particularly in the halves. The loss of Luke Keary to an ACL injury would be a massive blow to any side.  The forced retirement of Jake Friend and the continued absence of Boyd Cordner is also being felt.

As for the Dragons, they didn't beat the Warriors last weekend but there was enough to suggest that they have the goods to return to the winner's list in this one.

Roosters v Dragons

The rundown

Team news

Roosters: With Siosiua Taukeiaho (ribs) out, Lindsay Collins will start at prop with Jared Waerea-Hargreaves on the bench. In a positional change announced an hour before kick-off, Ben Marschke will start at hooker with Sam Verrills' return from a knee injury to come from the bench. Matt Ikuvalu is the 18th man.

Lock Victor Radley has been cleared to play after challenging the grading of a careless high tackle charge at the judiciary on Tuesday night.

The NRL's leading tryscorer Brett Morris (calf tightness) was a late withdrawal from the clash with the Storm last week will return.

The Roosters have won their past five games against the Dragons.

Dragons: In a series of changes announced an hour before kick-off, Jack Bird moves from centre to halfback and Adam Clune from halfback to the bench.

Cody Ramsey goes from the wing into the centres and Jordan Pereira (No.20) will start on the wing. Billy Burns goes from the bench into the second row, with Josh Kerr to start the game on the bench. Kaide  Ellis is the 18th man.

Halfback and captain Ben Hunt won't return from a fractured fibula this week, dropping off the reserves list on Saturday along with Brayden Wiliame. 

Prop Blake Lawrie will return after missing the Warriors game with a cork.

The Dragons have won 11 Anzac Day games to the Roosters' seven.

Team Lists

Backs

  • Fullback for Roosters is number 1 James Tedesco
    Fullback for Dragons is number 1 Matthew Dufty
  • Winger for Roosters is number 2 Daniel Tupou
    Winger for Dragons is number 5 Mikaele Ravalawa
  • Centre for Roosters is number 3 Josh Morris
    Centre for Dragons is number 2 Cody Ramsey
  • Centre for Roosters is number 4 Joseph Manu
    Centre for Dragons is number 4 Zac Lomax
  • Winger for Roosters is number 5 Brett Morris
    Winger for Dragons is number 20 Jordan Pereira
  • Five-Eighth for Roosters is number 6 Drew Hutchison
    Five-Eighth for Dragons is number 6 Corey Norman
  • Halfback for Roosters is number 7 Sam Walker
    Halfback for Dragons is number 3 Jack Bird

Forwards

  • Prop for Roosters is number 8 Isaac Liu
    Prop for Dragons is number 8 Blake Lawrie
  • Hooker for Roosters is number 14 Benjamin Marschke
    Hooker for Dragons is number 9 Andrew McCullough
  • Prop for Roosters is number 17 Lindsay Collins
    Prop for Dragons is number 10 Paul Vaughan
  • 2nd Row for Roosters is number 11 Angus Crichton
    2nd Row for Dragons is number 12 Tariq Sims
  • 2nd Row for Roosters is number 12 Sitili Tupouniua
    2nd Row for Dragons is number 18 Billy Burns
  • Lock for Roosters is number 13 Victor Radley
    Lock for Dragons is number 13 Tyrell Fuimaono

Interchange

  • Interchange for Roosters is number 9 Sam Verrills
    Interchange for Dragons is number 7 Adam Clune
  • Interchange for Roosters is number 15 Jared Waerea-Hargreaves
    Interchange for Dragons is number 11 Josh Kerr
  • Interchange for Roosters is number 16 Nat Butcher
    Interchange for Dragons is number 15 Josh McGuire
  • Interchange for Roosters is number 18 Fletcher Baker
    Interchange for Dragons is number 16 Daniel Alvaro

Reserves

  • Reserve for Roosters is number 19 Matt Ikuvalu
    Reserve for Dragons is number 14 Kaide Ellis

Match Officials

  • Referee: Ashley Klein
  • Touch Judge: Todd Smith
  • Touch Judge: Matt Noyen
  • Senior Review Official: Henry Perenara

Last updated:

Key match-up

Sam Walker v Adam Clune: Walker has already shown that despite his young age and slight frame, he is at NRL standard. Clune has had his ups and downs, but if he can steer his team around in a competent manner, the likes of Dufty and Norman can take things from there.

Stat attack

The Roosters were credited with 51 missed tackles in their loss to the Storm. With the ball, their completion rate was just 70 per cent and they only managed 10 offloads for the match.

 

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