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Bulldogs players to miss Mounties match

The Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs can confirm their top 30 contracted and development players named to play for Mounties today in the NSW Cup match against the St George Illawarra Dragons, will not play.

Aaron Schoupp, Tuipulotu Katoa, Lachlan Lewis, Brandon Wakeham, Ofahiki Ogden, Dean Britt, Jackson Topine, Joe Stimson and James Roumanos were all named in the team earlier in the week, but as a result of the upgraded NRL COVID-19 protocols and all nine players being members of the club's bubble, the players have been withdrawn from this afternoon's clash.

The final makeup of the Mounties team will be confirmed an hour before kick-off (12.40pm).

Meanwhile, Lewis, Katoa and Ogden were also included on the extended bench for the NRL side, with a final 17 to be confirmed an hour before kick-off today (3pm).

NRL players have returned to level three COVID protocols and the NRL advised clubs of the restrictions after the NSW Government announced a raft of measures for the Greater Sydney area from 5pm Thursday until 12.01am Monday.

Players will be restricted from visiting crowded venues, such as shopping centres, attending family gatherings and using public transport after the NRL re-introduced the level three protocols. 

Players, staff and officials at all Sydney-based clubs as well as the Melbourne Storm, who are currently in Sydney, must remain at home unless training, exercising or shopping for essential needs.

There will also be restrictions in place at games, with venues divided into clean and dirty zones and media prohibited from entering dressing rooms. Temperature testing will take place at matches and players and officials must provide a daily report of their whereabouts.