Bunnies to unleash prolific winger in NRL

·2-min read

As if having the prolific Alex Johnston wasn't enough, another winger with a stellar try-scoring record will line up for South Sydney this weekend with Izaak Thompson to make his NRL debut against the Warriors.

The 25-year-old has racked up 38 tries in his past 36 NSW Cup appearances, including five in two matches, and was confirmed as a starter for Saturday's clash at Sunshine Coast Stadium by Rabbitohs coach Jason Demetriou.

It's a reward for perseverance for the late bloomer having failed to make the grade at St George Illawarra before his move to Redfern.

"He's probably the form winger in the NSW Cup," Demetriou told reporters on Friday.

"He's worked really hard to get into this position.

"Really excited for him and I'm sure he'll step up tomorrow."

Thompson's elevation means Taane Milne drops out to be 18th man with Jaxson Paulo shifting from wing to centre.

Tom Burgess's suspension for his high tackle late in last weekend's golden-point loss to Cronulla has allowed Mark Nicholls to come back via the Rabbitohs' interchange bench.

The eighth-placed Rabbitohs will need to bounce back to winning ways ahead of a gruelling run home featuring Parramatta, Penrith, North Queensland and the Sydney Roosters.

While the Warriors are out of finals contention however and appear the easiest of Souths' remaining games on paper, Demetriou is wary of a team which nearly pulled off a stunning upset in their previous meeting this season - a 32-30 win.

"We had a handy lead at halftime, 26-6, and were very lucky to hang onto the game," Demetriou said.

"We know the talent that's in their footy side and we've just got to make sure we're improving on our game and make sure we're doing it for 80 minutes."

Warriors coach Stacey Jones has moved Wayde Egan from hooker to replace the injured Chanel Harris-Tevita (knee) at five-eighth with Freddy Lussick donning the No.9 jersey.

Jones also has Aaron Pene, Bayley Sironen and Jack Murchie all returning to his pack while Taniela Otukolo will play his first game since round 13 from the interchange bench.

Souths have won all three matches they've played at Sunshine Coast Stadium, including two victories over the Warriors.

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