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Can the under-fire Dragons bounce back?
It's been one hell of a week for the Red V - and it's only Thursday.
After Monday's horror show against fellow cellar-dwellers Canterbury, the Dragons have slumped to last place on the ladder. The following morning, the club's board held an emergency meeting. There they publicly offered their "full support" to coach Paul McGregor.
So where to now for St George Illawarra?
A number of stars, including Ben Hunt and Tyson Frizell, are out of form. And on paper, it doesn't get any easier: taking on rivals Cronulla. While John Morris and his troops are flying high after a win over the Cowboys, McGregor has shown faith in his side, - with only two forced changes due to injury. Can the Dragons bounce back against the young Sharks?
For the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic prevented crowds from attending NRL games, the Newcastle Knights will have fans in corporate areas when they take on Melbourne Storm at Gosford on Saturday.
If we go to the one-on-one match-ups, Kalyn Ponga v Storm custodian Ryan Papenhuyzen is just cracker waiting to be lit.
There's lots happening in the nation's capital as the Green Machine prepare to face the Tigers. With the footy back, focus has shifted to Nick Cotric's contract talks while The Canberra Times crew contemplate if Raiders fans are being dudded by the NRL.
The round kicks off with the leaky Broncos facing Manly tonight. Having conceded 132 points in four games, coach Anthony Seibold activated the axe following the Roosters rout. Buckle up for another interesting start to the round.
The footy news you can't afford to miss
- LAURIE DALEY: There's method in madness behind the decision to drop Benji
- BARRY TOOHEY:Ashley Gordon on race, unity, and football
- MITCH JENNINGS:Injury sees Dragons reshuffle after coach dodges bullet
- JOHN VEAGE:Young Sharks looking towards derby clash
- DAVID POLKINGHORNE:Cotric back in Raiders' contract talks after COVID-19 shutdown
- MITCH JENNINGS: McGregor survives emergency board meeting despite dismal start
- PODCAST:Are Raiders fans being dudded by the NRL?
- DAVID POLKINGHORNE:Benji's fate sealed with a kiss (on the cheek)
- MELISSA WOODS: Mates Papenhuyzen, Ponga to renew rivalry
- TEAM LISTS:Check out all of the NRL teams for round 5