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The Bulldogs will say goodbye to talented outside back Will Hopoate in a match that will see both sides playing for nothing more than pride.

If things go their way, Wests Tigers can finish as high as 11th. That still won't give their fans a lot to cheer them up over the summer, but it is still better than 13th.

Last-placed, or at least a share of it, has belonged to the Bulldogs all season.

They have a host of big-name players joining the club for 2022, meaning some of the team they'll send out on Sunday are facing uncertain futures.

The rundown

Team news

Wests Tigers: Moses Mbye (head knock) is out, with Zac Cini named at fullback and Kelma Tuilagi joining the bench. James Roberts will be the 18th man.

Mbye and Tui Simpkins were omitted from the initial 21-man squad on Saturday.

Wests Tigers have won their past three games against the Bulldogs.

Bulldogs: Kyle Flanagan was left out of the Canterbury team an hour before kick-off, with Jake Averillo to start at halfback. 

Dylan Napa will start at prop in his final match for the club, with Jack Hetherington moving into the second row and Corey Waddell back to the interchange bench.

Watson Heleta will be Canterbury's 18th man.

Bailey Biondi-Odo and Falakiko Manu were omitted from the playing squad 24 hours before kick-off.

The Bulldogs are aiming to avoid a club record-equalling 11th straight loss.

Team Lists

Backs

  • Fullback for Wests Tigers is number 20 Zac Cini
    Fullback for Bulldogs is number 1 Nick Meaney
  • Winger for Wests Tigers is number 2 David Nofoaluma
    Winger for Bulldogs is number 2 Corey Allan
  • Centre for Wests Tigers is number 3 Tommy Talau
    Centre for Bulldogs is number 3 Will Hopoate
  • Centre for Wests Tigers is number 4 Michael Chee Kam
    Centre for Bulldogs is number 4 Aaron Schoupp
  • Winger for Wests Tigers is number 5 Ken Maumalo
    Winger for Bulldogs is number 5 Jayden Okunbor
  • Five-Eighth for Wests Tigers is number 6 Jock Madden
    Five-Eighth for Bulldogs is number 6 Brandon Wakeham
  • Halfback for Wests Tigers is number 7 Luke Brooks
    Halfback for Bulldogs is number 21 Jake Averillo

Forwards

  • Prop for Wests Tigers is number 8 Stefano Utoikamanu
    Prop for Bulldogs is number 8 Ava Seumanufagai
  • Hooker for Wests Tigers is number 9 Jacob Liddle
    Hooker for Bulldogs is number 9 Sione Katoa
  • Prop for Wests Tigers is number 10 Thomas Mikaele
    Prop for Bulldogs is number 20 Dylan Napa
  • 2nd Row for Wests Tigers is number 11 Shawn Blore
    2nd Row for Bulldogs is number 10 Jack Hetherington
  • 2nd Row for Wests Tigers is number 12 Luciano Leilua
    2nd Row for Bulldogs is number 12 Joe Stimson
  • Lock for Wests Tigers is number 13 Alex Twal
    Lock for Bulldogs is number 13 Josh Jackson

Interchange

  • Interchange for Wests Tigers is number 14 Joe Ofahengaue
    Interchange for Bulldogs is number 11 Corey Waddell
  • Interchange for Wests Tigers is number 15 Jake Simpkin
    Interchange for Bulldogs is number 15 Ofahiki Ogden
  • Interchange for Wests Tigers is number 16 Tom Amone
    Interchange for Bulldogs is number 16 Chris Patolo
  • Interchange for Wests Tigers is number 23 Kelma Tuilagi
    Interchange for Bulldogs is number 17 Jackson Topine

Reserves

  • Reserve for Wests Tigers is number 18 James Roberts
    Reserve for Bulldogs is number 22 Watson Heleta

Match Officials

  • Referee: Chris Sutton
  • Touch Judge: Phil Henderson
  • Touch Judge: Kasey Badger
  • Senior Review Official: Chris Butler

Last updated:

Key match-up

Stefano Utoikamanu v Jack Hetherington: The young Tiger has come of age in 2021, averaging 10 hit-ups and 100 metres per game as well as busting 35 tackles and crossing for six tries. He has been a shining light in another disappointing for Michael Maguire and will look to round out the season with another strong display.

Hetherington may sail close to the wind at times but he refuses to take a backward step regardless of a rival's reputation, as he showed against Manly on Sunday. It's the last hurrah for both these sides so expect the forwards to leave nothing in the tank.

Stat attack

The Wests Tigers can never be accused of letting their teammates take one-out runs. They have the most support runs, decoy runs and offloads in the NRL through 24 rounds.

 

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