Return of Lewis relieves Panthers - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Return of Lewis relieves Panthers

By David Beniuk 27/07/2010 07:17:14 PM Comments (0)

Stumbling Penrith will welcome back star lock Luke Lewis from a shoulder injury for Friday night's NRL clash with North Queensland.

Lewis' absence has coincided with the Panthers' late season hiccup, with the NSW representative missing the last two of his side's current three-game losing streak.

He was in stellar form before suffering the injury during the loss to the Warriors three weeks ago and will be a massive boost as Matt Elliott's side looks to get its season back on track.

Five-eighth Wade Graham has been relegated to the bench, with former Cowboy Travis Burns to wear the No.6 jersey at CUA Stadium.

Burns will oppose former bad boy Arana Taumata, who has been shifted from the centres to pivot by coach Neil Henry.

As expected, South Sydney will welcome back hooker Issac Luke from a shoulder injury, while Dave Tyrell will start in the second row for the injured Dave Taylor (broken collarbone) against Canterbury at ANZ Stadium on Friday night.

The Wests Tigers have been bolstered by the returns of second-rower Gareth Ellis (groin), winger Beau Ryan (shoulder) and back Geoff Daniela (neck) for Saturday's clash with Cronulla at Leichhardt Oval.

Prop Bryce Gibbs drops back to the bench to accommodate Ellis, with Todd Payten to start in the front row.

The Sydney Roosters have named halfback Mitchell Pearce (hamstring) and forward Nate Myles (hip) despite the pair missing Monday night's win over Brisbane.

But they will be without aggressive Kiwi Jared Waerea-Hargreaves (calf) for Saturday's blockbuster against Parramatta at Parramatta Stadium.

Five-eighth Todd Carney said Pearce would be ready to go.

"He'll have to do a fitness test this week," Carney said.

"Knowing Mitch, he'll come back and tear straight in.

"He's a competitor and he'll be straight back in and firing with all guns."

Newcastle coach Rick Stone has moved captain Kurt Gidley to halfback for Monday night's clash with Manly at EnergyAustralia Stadium.

Gidley's move comes after an ankle injury to half Ben Rogers, with Shannon McDonnell the new fullback.

Warriors centre Jerome Ropati (groin) and winger Kevin Locke (hamstring) have been ruled out of the clash with the Gold Coast in Auckland on Sunday.

Second-rower Lewis Brown has been moved to the centres with Bill Tupou the replacement for Locke.

"We've had to deal with situations like this all season so there's no point getting too worried about it," coach Ivan Cleary said.

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