2014 NRL Grand Final rivals South Sydney Rabbitohs and Canterbury Bulldogs meet again at ANZ Stadium with spots in this year’s finals series on the line. Defeat for either side will have potentially serious consequences, with the Rabbitohs in danger of slipping out of the top four, while the Bulldogs could fall outside of the top eight altogether.
In an ironic twist, both teams will be missing their first choice hooker in this encounter – as was the case for the decider in October last year. Souths’ Isaac Luke is serving a one match ban, while Michael Lichaa will miss the rest of the Bulldogs’ campaign with a serious ankle injury.
The Rabbitohs have a real selection headache to contend with as Luke Keary is also suspended. John Sutton will play in the halves if he can shake off a niggling injury, while regular backup hooker Cam McInnes is still out. Souths do at least welcome back Glenn Stewart following his own suspension.
Dominance via the forward pack is usually a route to success for the Bulldogs, although the Rabbitohs are as well equipped as any team in the competition to contend with the threat. If both packs maintain the intensity a tight match is guaranteed, with skill and agility from the back-line by the likes of Greg Inglis or Brett Morris likely to decide the outcome.
Friday 21st August, ANZ Stadium Homebush 19:45
South Sydney Rabbitohs v Canterbury Bulldogs
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