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Star Panthers winger Brian To'o is set to make his return from a foot injury in Saturday's preliminary final against Melbourne at Suncorp Stadium but prop Moses Leota has been ruled out with a calf complaint.

Casualty Ward By Club

To'o missed last weekend's 8-6 defeat of Parramatta but Panthers coach Ivan Cleary said he and second-rower Viliame Kikau would take their places in the team.

In a video released by the club on Saturday morning, Penrith trainer Pete Green said To'o's ankle had "rebounded really well" after the week off and he would be given "right up until kick-off to prove his fitness".

"Biz has done well. He looks really good this week," Cleary said. "He put his hand up to play last week but we actually pulled him out. It is going to be a big benefit for him, I think."

Asked about Kikau, who suffered an ankle injury in the match against the Eels, Cleary said: "He looks good too."

Leota has been replaced in the starting side by Liam Martin with Spencer Leniu joining the bench.

Brent Naden, who has filled in on the flank for To'o, is the player likely to make way for the Blues winger's return.

Finals week three team lists

Storm v Panthers, Saturday 4pm at Suncorp Stadium

Storm: Star winger Josh Addo-Carr returns from a hamstring injury and said earlier this week he was running at "95 percent" and will be good to go for Saturday afternoon.

Bullocking hooker Brandon Smith was cleared of a facial fracture following a head clash with Manly's Josh Aloiai in week one and he is a confirmed starter.

Tom Eisenhuth is the 18th man with Isaac Lumelume dropping out of the playing squad an hour before kick-off. Aaron Pene and Chris Lewis were the first two players cut from the squad on Friday.

The Storm have won four of their past five preliminary finals.

Panthers: Brian To'o (ankle) is a late inclusion after being named in the 21-man squad among the reserves following his late withdrawal against the Eels. Viliame Kikau (ankle) is also cleared to play and will come off the bench with Tevita Pangai jnr joining the starting pack.

The Panthers lost prop Moses Leota to a minor calf complaint on Friday. His place in the starting side is taken by Liam Martin and Spencer Leniu comes onto the bench.

Tyrone May (knee) is set to make his return on the interchange, replacing Mitch Kenny (ankle). May injured his MCL last month but returned to training last week.

Brent Naden is the 18th man, while J'maine Hopgood was omitted from the squad on game day. Izack Tago and Leota were the two players to come out of the squad on Friday.

The Panthers have scored only two tries in two finals matches in 2021.

 

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