Mitchell Pearce will return after not being selected for NSW, and James Maloney also failed to secure a Blues jersey, meaning the Roosters will unexpectedly have their halves together during a tough Origin period. Aidan Guerra, Michael Jennings and Daniel Tupou, however, have been selected for their respective states while Boyd Cordner is expected to miss at least seven weeks with a high ankle sprain.
Therefore, the Roosters will shift SKD to Tupou’s wing, Aubo to his centre spot and Samisoni Langi has been named to start at the the open centre spot. Dylan Napa and Frank Paul Nuuasala will start in the back row, while Remi Casty has been named once again to make his belated debut off the bench alongside the recalled Kane Evans. He’s been named twice before but fallen off at the last minute.
Roosters team for Round 11: Anthony Minichiello, Shaun Kenny-Dowall, Mitchell Aubusson, Samisoni Langi, Roger Tuivasa-Sheck, James Maloney, Mitchell Pearce, Jared Waerea-Hargreaves, Jake Friend, Sam Moa, Dylan Napa, Sonny Bill Williams, Frank Paul Nuuasala. Interchange: Daniel Mortimer, Isaac Liu, Kane Evans, Remi Casty.
Trent Hodkinson, Josh Reynolds, Josh Morris and Tony Williams have all been selected for the NSW squad, unexpectedly leaving the Bulldogs short heading into this game. replacing those four are Reni Maitua, Moses Mbye in the halves, with Chase Stanley shifting to Morris’ centre spot and Krisnan Inu on the wing. Dale Finucane comes into the run on squad with Pat O’Hanlon named in the 17. Corey Thompson and Lachlan Burr have been named on an extended bench.
They are missing their halves, sure, but the Roosters are missing just as many players in this one. Anyone expecting a flogging needs to reconsider.
Bulldogs team for Round 11: Sam Perrett, Mitch Brown, Chase Stanley, Tim Lafai, Krisnan Inu, Reni Maitua, Moses Mbye, Aiden Tolman, Michael Ennis, James Graham, Josh Jackson, Dale Finucane, Greg Eastwood. Interchange: Pat O’Hanlon, Tim Browne, David Klemmer, Sam Kasiano, Corey Thompson, Lachlan Burr.