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With just one win apiece in the opening month there is plenty at stake for the Rabbitohs and Dragons in round five.

The Red V got some momentum during the pre-season trials and carried that into a strong first-up win over the Warriors but losses to Penrith, Cronulla and Parramatta have set them on their heels.

The Rabbitohs pushed the Storm to golden point in round two and then outclassed arch-rivals the Roosters in round three but they were no match for the Panthers in last weekend's grand final rematch.

Anthony Griffin's men have conceded 120 points in four matches and they could be in for a long night if the Rabbitohs' machine clicks into gear and Latrell Mitchell and Cody Walker get hot.

Sportsbet Betting preview: Rabbitohs v Dragons

The Rundown

Team news

Rabbitohs: Lebanon international Josh Mansour replaces Jaxson Paulo in the backline after being dropped in the wake of the round 1 loss to Brisbane. Mark Nicholls is out for up to eight weeks after scans confirmed a syndesmosis injury.  He will be replaced by Tom Burgess in the front row. Davvy Moale and Blake Taaffe are the new faces on the bench. Taaffe will provide cover for fullback Latrell Mitchell, who is battling a knee injury, halves Cody Walker and Lachlan Ilias and the outside backs. He is expected to be thrust into action just before halftime or early in the second half in his return from an ankle injury. Hame Sele is 18th man. 

Dragons: A boost for the Red V with Jaydn Su'A back in time to face his former club. Su'A's return shifts Jack Gosiewski to the reserves. Moses Mbye retains the fullback spot with Tyrell Sloan dropping out of the squad. Aaron Woods starts up front with Blake Lawrie moving back to the interchange. There were no changes when the side was finalised 60 minutes before kick-off.

Team Lists

Backs

  • Fullback for Rabbitohs is number 1 Latrell Mitchell
    Fullback for Dragons is number 1 Moses Mbye
  • Winger for Rabbitohs is number 2 Alex Johnston
    Winger for Dragons is number 2 Mathew Feagai
  • Centre for Rabbitohs is number 3 Taane Milne
    Centre for Dragons is number 3 Moses Suli
  • Centre for Rabbitohs is number 4 Campbell Graham
    Centre for Dragons is number 4 Zac Lomax
  • Winger for Rabbitohs is number 5 Josh Mansour
    Winger for Dragons is number 5 Mikaele Ravalawa
  • Five-Eighth for Rabbitohs is number 6 Cody Walker
    Five-Eighth for Dragons is number 6 Jack Bird
  • Halfback for Rabbitohs is number 7 Lachlan Ilias
    Halfback for Dragons is number 7 Ben Hunt

Forwards

  • Prop for Rabbitohs is number 8 Tevita Tatola
    Prop for Dragons is number 8 Francis Molo
  • Hooker for Rabbitohs is number 9 Damien Cook
    Hooker for Dragons is number 9 Andrew McCullough
  • Prop for Rabbitohs is number 10 Thomas Burgess
    Prop for Dragons is number 10 Aaron Woods
  • 2nd Row for Rabbitohs is number 11 Keaon Koloamatangi
    2nd Row for Dragons is number 11 Tariq Sims
  • 2nd Row for Rabbitohs is number 12 Jai Arrow
    2nd Row for Dragons is number 12 Jaydn Su'A
  • Lock for Rabbitohs is number 13 Cameron Murray
    Lock for Dragons is number 13 Jack De Belin

Interchange

  • Interchange for Rabbitohs is number 14 Blake Taaffe
    Interchange for Dragons is number 14 Talatau Amone
  • Interchange for Rabbitohs is number 15 Jacob Host
    Interchange for Dragons is number 15 Josh Kerr
  • Interchange for Rabbitohs is number 16 Davvy Moale
    Interchange for Dragons is number 16 Blake Lawrie
  • Interchange for Rabbitohs is number 17 Liam Knight
    Interchange for Dragons is number 17 Jackson Ford

Reserves

  • Replacement for Rabbitohs is number 18 Hame Sele
    Replacement for Dragons is number 18 Tautau Moga

Match Officials

  • Referee: Ben Cummins
  • Touch Judge: Jon Stone
  • Touch Judge: Darian Furner
  • Senior Review Official: Chris Butler

Last updated:

Key match-up

Tom Burgess v Aaron Woods: The engine room will be full of match-ups this weekend but Burgess and Woods have been around long enough to know it all starts in the middle. Burgess had an unhappy night with his hands against the Panthers last week but gets a start with Mark Nicholls out. Woods returned from a hamstring injury against the Eels and will be better for the run.

Stat attack

Their teams may be struggling to find consistency but key playmakers Cody Walker and Ben Hunt have done everything in their power to provide a spark. Hunt tops the NRL for line engagements with 39 after four rounds and Walker sits second on the list with 31.

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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