Late Mail Round 6: Dogs of War

Late mail man Adam Stiles brings you all the last-minute team news heading into Round 6.


Well well well, how the turn tables.

After several rounds of largely straightforward lineups, including many 1-17s, round 5 spat out some of the grossest game day swaps of recent memory that really pushed the character limits of X.

The Bulldogs and Warriors combined for eighteen players movements alone, the Roosters played edge roulette and we had multiple other shenanigans that kept me on my toes for the entire round.

For SuperCoaches’ sakes, and my own sanity, I’m hoping for a far simpler one but looking at all the doubtful players named just for the Bulldogs, I’ll be ready for anything.

As usual, all the updates across the round will come via @scplaybook1 on X/Twitter and Instagram, as well as myself @AStilesAuthor (X/Twitter only). 

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Greg Marzhew has appeared on the extended bench and according to Barry Toohey, just has to make it through training to line up. He survived the first team cut which is promising for his return.

24 hour cuts: Cartwright, Gamble, Pryce


Nothing noteworthy 24 hours out so barring another game day swap on the edges, I’m not expecting anything major.

24 hours cuts: Ioelu, Savala, Wong


Joe Chan has finally resurfaced, albeit on the extended bench, after a hand infection has kept him out of action. Given Shawn Blore looked the goods last week, Chan might find it hard to break back into the side.

Nelson Asofa-Solomona has also made his first appearance on the extended bench this year and could also be in line to be elevated to the 17.


Where do I begin here? I could throw a dart at the team list and land on someone who is doubtful including the likes of Max KingViliame Kikau, Josh Addo-Carr and Connor Tracey.

We have clarity on Max King at least, who will miss in the range of 4-6 weeks with a wrist fracture.

This would see one of Sam Hughes or Poasa Faamausili start at prop and Liam Knight potentially rejoin the side from the bench, or even starting prop himself. 

According to Gus Gould, a decision on Tracey and Kikau will come after captain’s run, while Addo-Carr should be fine to return from his concussion.

All things being equal, I could see a similar switch as last week involving Josh Curran to the bench however with dwindling healthy bodies he may stay put. 

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Jordan Riki has been cleared to play after rolling his ankle at training.

Reece Walsh and Xavier Willison both return to the side and should line up without issue.


Tom Flegler has been ruled out with a shoulder injury.

Mark Nicholls will come into the starting team in his place, with Lachlan Hubner joining the bench.

Named according to their other injuries, I’m not expecting any major changes to the side.


An absolute shocker to keep track of last week, I really hope the Warriors do me a solid and stick to the plan. 

Dallin Watene-Zelezniak was a late out last week with a hamstring injury but should play, as should Shaun Johnson at this stage, who missed training earlier this week with a lower leg issue. 

The bench makeup is always hard to predict.


Manly normally line up as named and nothing stands out on the team list, so expecting 1-17 here.


After some wild forward swaps in round 4, the Eels went back to their customary prop swap in round 5.

With last week’s late starter Wiremu Greig not even in the 17, I expect Joe Ofahengaue to be the man this week to replace Junior Paulo as a starter on game day. 

Based on recent form, I can’t rule out further swaps with Coach Arthur needing wins, but that’s the only predictable one at this stage with Bryce Cartwright seemingly, and surprisingly,on track for his return.


No changes expected for the Cowboys, should be 1-17.

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This lineup could be anything come game day based on the forced and unforced TLT changes. 

The major name on the extended bench is Damian Cook, but surely JD sticks to his guns after making the statement. 

Shaq Mitchell should return from concussion.


Both Toby Rudolf and Braden Hamlin-Uele stand out on the extended bench as both attempt to return from their respective injuries.

I could easily see them joining the bench, or at least one starting, if they make it through captain’s run.


Benji has been consistent with sticking to his team as named, so I’m expecting 1-17.


I’m confident in basically copy-pasting last week’s writeup for the Dragons, in that a shuffle in the forward pack on game day is becoming a given. 

Tom EisenhuthBlake Lawrie and Jack De Belin are the usual suspects to play musical chairs, with Raymond Faitala-Mariner frequently finding his way back into the starting 13.


After an dominating win last round I’m not expecting any game day changes after injuries forced coach’s hand on TLT. 

1-17 likely with Zac Hosking to return from concussion.

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Kieran Foran looked pretty banged up last week so I imagine he needs to clear captain’s run to line up, but it being the last game of the round helps.

David Fifita has been named as a starter this round so I’m expecting minimal changes on game day, however Isaac Liu, who is returning from concussion, could play lock with Klese Haas moving back to the bench.

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