Roger Tuivasa-Sheck and Dan Mortimer have both been named despite heavy head knocks suffered against the Sea Eagles on Monday night. Given it’s a five-day turnaround, it is surprising they’ve been named — especially RTS, whose head-knock with James Hasson was sickening and resulted in Hasson being taken to hospital with bleeding on the eye.
James Maloney has also been named to return just 10 days after fracturing a few bones in his face. If all three end up playing, this is the closest the Roosters will get to a full strength squad for the rest of the season with Marty Kennedy, Kane Evans and Tautau Moga all ruled ou effectively for the rest of the year.
Roosters team for Round 17: Anthony Minichiello (C) ,Daniel Tupou, Michael Jennings, Shaun Kenny-Dowall, Roger Tuivasa-Sheck, James Maloney, Mitchell Pearce, Jared Waerea-Hargreaves, Jake Friend, Luke O’Donnell, Sonny Bill Williams, Mitch Aubusson, Boyd Cordner. Interchange: (From) Frank-Paul Nu’uasala, Daniel Mortimer, Aidan Guerra, Sam Moa, Isaac Liu.
Josh Dugan has been ruled out for this one after taking the early guilty plea and subsequent one-match suspension for a shoulder charge during the Dragons’ loss to the Panthers on Saturday. Adam Quinlan has been promoted to fullback, with Charly Runciman named in the centres after debuting last week.
Trent Merrin returns from suspension and has been named at lock, while Chase Stanley is the five-eighth who has replaced now-London Bronco Jamie Soward.
Dragons team for Round 17: Adam Quinlan, Brett Morris, Matt Cooper, Charly Runciman, Jason Nightingale, Chase Stanley, Nathan Fien, Jack De Belin, Mitch Rein, Jack Stockwell, Tyson Frizell, Ben Creagh (C), Trent Merrin. Interchange: (From) Cameron King, Leeson Ah Mau, Matt Prior, Michael Weyman, Will Matthews, Atelea Vea.