Both Canterbury and North Queensland have been dealt injury blows in the build up to their clash in Townsville on Sunday.
The Bulldogs will be without captain Josh Jackson, after the 30-year-old sustained a torn calf muscle at training on Tuesday, with Englishman Luke Thompson taking his place in the No.13 jumper.
Josh Jackson is out for the Bulldogs after suffering a calf tear at training. Scans to confirm severity, but “tear” often used to describe a grade 2 strain (involves partial tearing of muscle fibres). Would be a 3-6 week recovery if confirmed
— NRL PHYSIO (@nrlphysio) April 13, 2021
Matt Doorey moves into the squad after the change, while Chris Smith is promoted to the reserves.
The Cowboys will welcome back their captain however, with Jason Taumalolo returning from a hand injury.
Taumalolo’s arrival will be combatted by the loss of Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow and Reuben Cotter, who are battling ankle and foot injuries respectively.
The pair are set to spend the next month on the sidelines, with Coen Hess coming into prop and Francis Molo moving to the bench.
Young prop Tom Gilbert is continuing to recover from a leg injury and is expected to return to Todd Payten’s side in Round 7 against the Raiders.
Canberra will be without fullback Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad for an extended period as the 25-year-old looks to recover from a bulging disc in his neck.
Former Panther Caleb Aekins will pull on the No.1 jumper for the Green Machine in his club debut, while Josh Hodgson remains in the lineup despite a hip complaint.
Meanwhile, veteran Sharks duo Wade Graham and Josh Dugan will miss their matchup against the Knights on Friday after failed HIA’s.
Newcastle will be without Chris Randall for the clash, but will welcome back Bradman Best, Kurt Mann and Jacob Saifiti.