Leeds fullback Zak Hardaker returns to the side after he was suspended by the club after police released images of him being involved in an alleged assault on a student.Embed from Getty Images
The 23-year-old missed last week’s 18-6 defeat at Warrington Wolves along with 19-year-old back-row Elliot Minchella, who was also identified in the incident.
Hardaker isn’t a stranger to controversy. In 2013 he was fined £2,500 by Leeds for breaking the clubs ‘Code of Conduct’ after he was also thrown out of England’s World Cup squad in 2013 for misconduct.
The Rhinos will be captained by Danny McGuire as Kevin Sinfield misses out with an injury. Liam Sutcliffe comes into the Yorkshire sides 19-man squad.
Kylie Leulaui is out with a rib injury so prop Andy Yates is poised to make his second start for the club.
Wigan Warriors won two of the three meetings between the sides last year and will be looking to avenge their 28-12 defeat at the Headingley Carnegie Stadium.
Coach Sean Wane has a few injury problems as winger Josh Charnley, who scored 19 tries last season, is out for up to six weeks after damaging his ankle ligaments.Embed from Getty Images
The Warriors will also be without Sam Powell, who picked up a calf problem in Wigan’s narrow 13-12 win against Hull FC, and Ryan Sutton who is recovering from concussion.
Wane has called up Dom Manfredi and George Williams to replace Charnley and Powell respectively while there are places in the 19-man squad for Ryan Hampshire, Logan Tomkins and Connor Farrell.
A win for the Rhinos would see them close the gap on unbeaten St Helens, who won 32-24 last night against Warrington Wolves, to two points while Wigan could climb to fourth with victory.
Leeds Rhinos (from): Carl Ablett, Paul Aiton, Tom Briscoe, Rob Burrow, Brett Delaney, Adam Cuthbertson, Ashton Golding, Ryan Hall, Zak Hardaker, Jamie Jones-Buchanan, Danny McGuire, Joel Moon, Jamie Peacock, Kevin Sinfield, Brad Singleton, Liam Sutcliffe, Stevie Ward, Kallum Watkins, Andy Yates.
Wigan Warriors (from): John Bateman, Matt Bowen, Joe Burgess, Tony Clubb, Connor Farrell, Liam Farrell, Anthony Gelling, James Greenwood, Ryan Hampshire, Dom Manfredi, Michael McIlorum, Lee Mossop, Larne Patrick, Dan Sarginson, Matty Smith, Taulima Tautai, Joel Tomkins, Logan Tomkins, George Williams.