Fittler not settled on Roosters line-up - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Fittler not settled on Roosters line-up

By Todd Balym 16/09/2008 07:23:51 PM Comments (0)

Sydney Roosters coach Brad Fittler has not ruled out several late changes to his NRL side for Friday's NRL semi-final with a squad of 21 to travel to New Zealand.

Fittler named a 17-man team to face the Warriors on Tuesday, with utility Mitchell Aubusson the only new inclusion due to the season-ending double arm fracture to hooker Riley Brown.

But Fittler has yet to settle on his line-up with several players, including Mark O'Meley and Setaimata Sa, still suffering the after-effects of a bruising loss to Brisbane last Friday.

Fittler took 20 players with him when the Roosters departed Sydney on Tuesday and winger Amos Roberts is set to join them in Auckland on Wednesday after his wife Zoe gave birth to a son on Tuesday.

"We're still waiting, a few blokes are getting through some concerns. At the moment hopefully everyone will be fully fit," said Fittler.

"Amos had a little boy. I tried to get him on a flight this arvo but Zoe wouldn't accept it. He'll be with us tomorrow.

"He's a chance, there's still some blokes carrying injuries.

"We've got to get our best 17 and health is going to have a lot to do with it.

"A few of them have a few bumps and bruises, it goes hand in hand with this time of year. We'll make our mind up later in the week."

Roberts wasn't named but is expected to come back from his shoulder injury and slot onto the wing for Brent Grose and oppose Warriors giant Manu Vatuvei.

The Warriors have made no changes to the side that upset Melbourne 18-15 last week at Olympic Park, building further on the continuity which has propelled them to nine wins from their past 11 games.

It is the third week in succession the Warriors have named the same 17 players with the semi-final also set to be milestone day for lock Micheal Luck who will play his 150th NRL career game.

Melbourne made just one change to the side which lost to the Warriors with forward Sika Manu back after missing last week with a hamstring strain at the expense of Scott Anderson.

Test forward Ryan Hoffman (ankle) and prop Jeff Lima (knee) were both named to face Brisbane at Suncorp Stadium on Saturday despite ongoing fitness concerns.

Hoffman suffered a recurrence of his ankle injury but was confident he would recover in time to face the Broncos in the semi-final.

"I'm giving myself the best opportunity to play and I'm really confident," said Hoffman.

Broncos coach Wayne Bennett on Tuesday named an unchanged side for the clash, despite three players being questioned by Queensland police over an alleged sexual assault.

Rep stars Karmichael Hunt, Darius Boyd and Sam Thaiday were included in the team the same day they were named in media reports as the players at the centre of the scandal.

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