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Roosters prop Jared Waerea-Hargreaves.

The Roosters will welcome three rep stars back for Thursday's match against Canberra but Melbourne, South Sydney, Parramatta and Newcastle are resting stars ahead of the finals.

Jared Waerea-Hargreaves, Angus Crichton and Josh Morris return to Trent Robinson's team, as does fill-in centre Adam Keighran.

Eels coach Brad Arthur has named an almost unrecognisable team to the one which beat Melbourne last weekend and elevated Will Smith from ball boy duties to captain for the derby clash with Penrith, while the Storm, Rabbitohs and Knights will field below strength sides.

Of the players in the Parramatta starting line-up against Melbourne, only wingers Blake Ferguson and Haze Dunster and hooker Joey Lussick will be on the field at kick-off on Friday night, while second-rower Shaun Lane has moved to the interchange.

NSW Origin prop Junior Paulo has copped a one-match ban while Mitch Moses, Isaiah Papali'i, Dylan Brown and Clint Gutherson are among the players sitting out.

Smith and Jakob Arthur are the new Parramatta halves combination, with Hayze Perham named at fullback.

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Souths coach Wayne Bennett has also chosen to rest Adam Reynolds, Cody Walker, Damian Cook, Alex Johnson, Dane Gagai, Cameron Murray, Jai Arrow and Tom Burgess from the match against St George Illawarra, while Latrell Mitchell and Liam Knight are suspended.

The Rabbitohs have named Blake Taaffe at fullback in place of Mitchell, while Benji Marshall will partner boom rookie Lachlan Ilias in the halves and Peter Mamouzelos replaces Cook at hooker.

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Melbourne coach Craig Bellamy has also made nine changes to his starting line-up from last weekend for Friday night’s match against Cronulla, with five-eighth Cameron Munster and forwards Christian Welch, Felise Kaufusi and Kenny Bromwich among the players rested.

Captain Jesse Bromwich is suspended and star winger Josh Addo-Carr is sidelined by injury but Dale Finucane, Nelson Asofa-Solomona and George Jennings return after missing the Parramatta clash.

Newcastle coach Adam O’Brien will rest hooker Jayden Brailey, centre Hymel Hunt and forwards Jacob Saifiti and Mitch Barnett for Saturday’s match against Brisbane after the Knights secured seventh spot with last weekend’s defeat of Gold Coast.

The Rabbitohs are assured of third place but Penrith can edge Melbourne for the minor premiership if they beat the Eels and the Storm lose to the Sharks, who will secure eighth position with a victory.

Panthers coach Ivan Cleary has chosen his strongest available line-up, as Manly’s Des Hasler for Saturday night’s match against North Queensland.

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The Sea Eagles, Eels and Roosters are vying for fourth position but Hasler’s men have the best for-and-against so only need to beat the Cowboys to earn a second chance in the finals.

Roosters coach Trent Robinson has named Lachlan Lam at halfback and Sam Walker on the bench for the match against the Raiders, while Morris returns from a hamstring injury in place of Joey Manu (cheekbone) and Crichton and Waerea-Hargreaves are also back.

Acknowledgement of Country

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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