Another bruising mid-week clash could affect several clubs this weekend.
New South Wales star fullback Jarryd Hayne looks set to back up for the Parramatta Eels after there was a lingering doubt he would play due to illness.
However, he has quickly recovered from how he was feeling on Origin II night and has indicated he will play this weekend against Melbourne Storm.
Paul Gallen and Luke Lewis have reported back to the Cronulla Sharks medical team for further examination after their efforts for the winning Blues side on Wednesday night and it is unclear at this stage if they will play.
In other Sharks injury news, Todd Carney (hamstring) and Anthony Tupou (ribs) will start for Cronulla in their game against the Manly Sea Eagles.
The pair could have played last week such as been their recuperation if it was not the club bye over the Origin period.
Sosaia Feki, Jonathan Wright and Jeff Robson (all hamstring) have all trained this week and are expected to be named to play this weekend.
If all three are named, it will be a massive boost for the Sharks who will be out to secure just their third win of the season as they look to distance themselves from the Newcastle Knights at the bottom of the NRL ladder.
The Raiders will decide on a 17 after their final training run late on Thursday, but report no injury concerns. Origin squad members Anthony Milford (Queensland) and Jack Wighton (NSW) will take part in the session. Joel Edwards (fractured cheekbone) will train and is a chance of an early return.
Trent Hodkinson and Josh Reynolds fronted up to club headquarters on Thursday for massages and general rehab following Wednesday night’s Origin clash. Both pulled up well and are expected to play, with final decisions to be made on Friday. Aidan Tolman (hamstring, round 17) won’t be a late inclusion. He will be saved until after next week’s bye.
The Warriors expect to be 1-17, with Ben Matulino (knee, round 18) sidelined and Ben Henry (knee) to return from injury. Star playmaker Shaun Johnson (ankle, groin) rested up over the bye and is a certain starter.
Maroons centre Justin Hodges failed to travel with the squad on Thursday morning and will be rested. However, Sam Thaiday and Matt Gillett boarded the plane and are expected to back-up from Origin, while Ben Hunt is a certain starter following a week in camp, but no game on Wednesday. Corey Parker (fractured cheekbone) trained with the recovery group this week.
Anthony Watmough (suspension) is out, with James Hasson to come into the 17. Watmough will be suspended for either two or four weeks, depending on the result of Thursday night’s judiciary hearing. Daly Cherry-Evans (knee) pulled up stiff and is nursing a number of knocks following a brutal Origin encounter. He will be given until game day to prove his fitness, with Jack Littlejohn on standby. Jamie Lyon (hamstring) has trained all week and will play. Jason King (rib cartilage) is also set to be fit.
Sharks’ Ricky Leutele (knee) trained on Wednesday and is a chance of being a late inclusion. A timeframe is yet to be set for John Morris (neck), although initial medical reports suggested his career may be over.
Ryan Hoffman, Cameron Smith and Billy Slater escaped Origin without serious injury and are expected to back up at this stage. They travelled back to Melbourne on Thursday and have Friday off, with a final decision to be made after Saturday’s captain’s run.
Will Hopoate (shoulder) has scans on Thursday evening, with the extent of his injury not yet known. However, he is a definite withdrawal from Sunday’s match regardless of the results, with Ryan Morgan to come into the side. Jarryd Hayne (illness) was feeling far better on Thursday than on Origin night and will back up.
Greg Bird, Dave Taylor and Nate Myles pulled up well from Origin and will play. Mid-season recruit Daniel Mortimer is a chance to come into the 17, with a final decision to be made on Saturday. He will have just two field sessions with his new teammates before the game – Thursday night’s opposed session and Saturday’s final run. Ashley Harrison (neck) is in doubt. Albert Kelly (leg) is no chance of an early return and is a week-to-week proposition.
Origin stars Josh Dugan and Trent Merrin don’t report for club duty until Saturday’s final training session, but both escaped serious injury and the club is optimistic they will play. The club reports no other concerns, with the side to travel on Saturday afternoon.
Darius Boyd and Beau Scott got through Origin and are expected to play. A final decision on Joseph Leilua (throat) will be made on Sunday, but Jeremy Smith (collarbone) is right to go.
The Cowboys will be without Brent Tate (ACL) and Matt Scott (fractured cheekbone). Scott remained in Sydney after Origin II, where he is expected to undergo surgery. Johnathan Thurston and James Tamou escaped serious injury and are expected to back up.