The Sydney Roosters take on the Brisbane Broncos in the second match of the inaugural NRLW finals series - and everything is on the line with a Grand Final spot up for grabs.
Form Guide: Sydney Roosters vs Brisbane Broncos
After four years in the competition, the Roosters and Broncos are well acquainted with one another, having played in six contest, which of course includes two Grand Finals in 2018 and 2020 respectively.
With the competition introducing a finals series for the first time, this will be the first matchup between the sides that will determine who qualifies for the 2021 Grand Final in Redcliffe next week.
John Strange's side is coming off a close 16-10 defeat to the second-placed St George Illawarra Dragons, while the Broncos claimed their fourth consecutive Minor Premiership with a thumping 38-4 victory over the Parramatta Eels, which - ironically - propelled the Roosters to fourth spot on for and against.
The last meeting between the two rivals saw Brisbane claim a 20-4 win - with the scoreline flattering the Broncos in what was a close affair that saw a number of Roosters make their NRLW debut way back in Round 1.
One month later, however, and the youngsters are now battle-hardened and have thrived with the demands of the NRLW, which will put them in pole position to claim a third Grand Final berth for Easts.
NRLW Round 1 Match Highlights: Roosters vs Broncos
How They Line Up:
After securing a place in the finals last week, John Strange has named his 24-player squad to take on the Broncos.
Captain Corban Baxter takes her place at fullback once again, joined by Leianne Tufuga, Jessica Sergis, Isabelle Kelly and Brydie Parker in the backline.
Zahara Temara has retained her spot at five-eighth, partnering Raecene McGregor in the halves.
Sarah Togatuki, Olivia Higgins and Mya Hill-Moana line up in the front row.
Fullback for Broncos is number 1 Tamika UptonFullback for Roosters is number 1 Corban Baxter
Winger for Broncos is number 2 Julia RobinsonWinger for Roosters is number 2 Leianne Tufuga
Centre for Broncos is number 3 Amy TurnerCentre for Roosters is number 3 Jessica Sergis
Centre for Broncos is number 4 Shenae CiesiolkaCentre for Roosters is number 4 Isabelle Kelly
Winger for Broncos is number 5 Emily BassWinger for Roosters is number 5 Brydie Parker
Five-Eighth for Broncos is number 6 Tarryn AikenFive-Eighth for Roosters is number 6 Zahara Temara
Halfback for Broncos is number 7 Ali BrigginshawHalfback for Roosters is number 7 Raecene McGregor
Prop for Broncos is number 8 Millie BoyleProp for Roosters is number 8 Sarah Togatuki
Hooker for Broncos is number 9 Lauren BrownHooker for Roosters is number 9 Olivia Higgins
Prop for Broncos is number 10 Chelsea LenarduzziProp for Roosters is number 10 Mya Hill-Moana
2nd Row for Broncos is number 11 Kaitlyn Phillips2nd Row for Roosters is number 11 Yasmin Meakes
2nd Row for Broncos is number 12 Amber Hall2nd Row for Roosters is number 12 Olivia Kernick
Lock for Broncos is number 13 Lavinia GouldLock for Roosters is number 13 Hannah Southwell
Interchange for Broncos is number 14 Hayley MaddickInterchange for Roosters is number 14 Jocelyn Kelleher
Interchange for Broncos is number 15 Tallisha HardenInterchange for Roosters is number 15 Keilee Joseph
Interchange for Broncos is number 16 Roxette MurdochInterchange for Roosters is number 16 Tayla Predebon
Interchange for Broncos is number 17 Sara SautiaInterchange for Roosters is number 17 Simone Karpani
Replacement for Broncos is number 18 Jada FergusonReplacement for Roosters is number 18 Joeli Morris
- Referee: Belinda Sharpe
- Senior Review Official: Matt Noyen
Rounding off the starting side is Yasmin Meakes and Olivia Kernick in the back row, while Hannah Southwell locks up the scrum in the no.13.
The interchange bench features Jocelyn Kelleher, Keilee Joseph, Tayla Predebon and Simone Karpani.
Joeli Morris has been named as 18th player.
Pani Hopoate, Lauretta Leao-Seve, Otesa Pule, Shawden Burton, Taylor-Adeline Mapusua and Teneka Todhunter round off the 24-player squad on the extended bench.
Meanwhile, the Broncos will be boosted by the return of fullback Tamika Upton and winger Julia Robinson from injury, while the rest of their side remains intact from their Round 5 win over Parramatta.
Kelly Potent on the Left Edge
Key Match Up: Isabelle Kelly vs Shenae Ciesiolka
Two of the competition's premier centres clash when Isabelle Kelly and Shenae Ciesiolka take the stage on Sunday afternoon.
In the pre-season, Kelly expressed her desire to complete her glittering trophy cabinet with an NRLW Premiership, having come close with the Red, White and Blue in the inaugural Grand Final in 2018.
She has been at the helm for the Roosters in season 2021 following a short stint at St George Illawarra, and Kelly has developed into a leader and focal point of the side's attack, forming a solid combination with winger Brydie Parker on the left.
Her opponent at both club and state level is Shenae Ciesiolka, who has solidified her spot in the Broncos' line up over the last two seasons, having made the permanent switch to the centres in 2021.
Ciesiolka may have the wood over Kelly when it comes to tries and try assists, but the powerfully built Rooster has dominated her opponents with an impressive seventeen tackle breaks and six line breaks.
Be sure to keep an eye out on the edges this Sunday as Kelly and Ciesiolka look to get their team on the front foot out wide.
Kelly Glides Through Late
The Sydney Roosters have the chance to make the Club's third Grand Final in four years in the NRLW competition, and will face the defending Premiers in what is set to be a mouth-watering clash.
St George Illawarra and the Gold Coast face off against one another in the pre-game at 12:00pm, and with tickets starting from just $15 for adults (with juniors under 15 able to attend for free with a paying adult) - you won't want to miss the biggest day of Women's Rugby League.
Be sure to grab your tickets here, cheer on the Red, White and Blue and help our NRLW side qualify for the 2021 Grand Final!