The Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs take on the Newcastle Knights, on Saturday, 5:30PM AEST, in their Round 23 clash at Cbus Super Stadium.
The Bulldogs will aim to finish the season strong with three rounds remaining in the 2021 NRL Season. Prop forward Luke Thompson will make a welcome return to bolster his side's chances after serving out his suspension.
Newcastle will be without Tyson Frizell, after the forward accepted a one-match ban. David Klemmer will replace Daniel Saifiti in the starting line-up, after the Fijian international succumbed to a knee injury he picked up in the Knight's 16-14 win over the Cronulla Sharks last Sunday.
Injury Update: Round 23 v Knights
Bulldogs: Luke Thompson returns to partner Ryan James in the front row, while Corey Allan takes his place on the wing after being ruled out due to illness in the warm up against the New Zealand Warriors last weekend. Other changes see Kyle Flanagan start at halfback, Jackson Topine named at hooker and Corey Waddell returning from a calf injury to line up in the second row.
Knights: Newcastle will be without Tyson Frizell, after the forward accepted a one-match ban. David Klemmer will replace Daniel Saifiti in the starting line-up, after the Fijian international succumbed to a knee injury he picked up in the Knight's 16-14 win over the Cronulla Sharks last Sunday.
Fullback for Bulldogs is number 1 Nick MeaneyFullback for Knights is number 1 Kalyn Ponga
Winger for Bulldogs is number 2 Corey AllanWinger for Knights is number 2 Enari Tuala
Centre for Bulldogs is number 3 Will HopoateCentre for Knights is number 3 Kurt Mann
Centre for Bulldogs is number 4 Aaron SchouppCentre for Knights is number 4 Bradman Best
Winger for Bulldogs is number 5 Jayden OkunborWinger for Knights is number 5 Hymel Hunt
Five-Eighth for Bulldogs is number 21 Lachlan LewisFive-Eighth for Knights is number 6 Jake Clifford
Halfback for Bulldogs is number 7 Kyle FlanaganHalfback for Knights is number 7 Mitchell Pearce
Prop for Bulldogs is number 8 Luke ThompsonProp for Knights is number 8 David Klemmer
Hooker for Bulldogs is number 9 Jackson TopineHooker for Knights is number 9 Jayden Brailey
Prop for Bulldogs is number 10 Ryan JamesProp for Knights is number 10 Jacob Saifiti
2nd Row for Bulldogs is number 11 Adam Elliott2nd Row for Knights is number 11 Brodie Jones
2nd Row for Bulldogs is number 12 Corey Waddell2nd Row for Knights is number 12 Mitchell Barnett
Lock for Bulldogs is number 13 Josh JacksonLock for Knights is number 13 Connor Watson
Interchange for Bulldogs is number 14 Bailey Biondi-OdoInterchange for Knights is number 14 Sauaso Sue
Interchange for Bulldogs is number 15 Ava SeumanufagaiInterchange for Knights is number 15 Josh King
Interchange for Bulldogs is number 16 Corey HorsburghInterchange for Knights is number 16 Jirah Momoisea
Interchange for Bulldogs is number 17 Joe StimsonInterchange for Knights is number 17 Chris Randall
Reserve for Bulldogs is number 22 Matt DooreyReserve for Knights is number 21 Simi Sasagi
- Referee: Peter Gough
- Touch Judge: Ziggy Przeklasa-Adamski
- Touch Judge: Kasey Badger
- Senior Review Official: Steve Chiddy
Nick Meaney v Kalyn Ponga: Meaney will need to go through concussion protocols after suffering a knock in last week's encounter against the Warriors. The fullback has been a consistent performer in the Bulldogs backline and will have a huge task ahead in containing Ponga.
Ponga has battled injury throughout 2021, though he has come into his own in the past month. An important piece of the Knight's line-up, the Novocastrian faithful will expect their fullback to carry the side's hopes deep into September.
Meaney has scored 7 tries and broken the line 6 times in 19 appearances this season. The fullback has also increased his yardage from dummy half, averaging 120 running metres per game.
Despite making only 11 appearances for the year due to injury, Ponga has been productive in his limited matches. Contributing 7 tries and 10 try assists, the dynamic flyer has caused headaches for opposing sides with 58 tackle breaks and 6 line breaks.
The Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs host their final home fixture of the year when they face the Newcastle Knights at Cbus Super Stadium this Saturday evening, kicking off at 5:30PM AEST. Tickets are available to our Round 23 fixture here.