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WHO PLAYS WHO IN NRL FINALS, WEEK ONE (All times AEST)
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 10
First Qualifying Final
1-Melbourne v 4-Manly at Sunshine Coast Stadium, 7.50pm
Craig Bellamy and Des Hasler meet again in another finals battle between these two unlikely rivals. The Storm will come in fresh after resting several key players in recent weeks but are sweating on a fitness concern to star five-eighth Cameron Munster with an infected knee needing a surgical cleanout last week. Manly may have lost when these teams met at the start of August but have the code's form player in Tom Trbojevic and an array of strike weapons that will ask plenty of questions of the premiers' defence.
SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 11
First Elimination Final
5-Sydney Roosters v 8-Gold Coast at Queensland Country Bank Stadium, 5.40pm
The Titans stormed into the top eight with a 44-0 thumping of the Warriors on Sunday but enter the playoffs with the worst record of any team in history to make the finals. They will have nothing to lose and appear to have uncovered a gamebreaker in young fullback Jayden Campbell, while David Fifita's impact off the bench can't be discounted. Trent Robinson's Roosters may be undermanned but they're a finals-hardened team and have won nine of their past 10 matches against the Titans.
Second Qualifying Final
2-Penrith v 3-South Sydney at Queensland Country Bank Stadium, 7.50pm
Penrith may have missed out on the minor premiership but a 40-6 win over an understrength Parramatta on Friday was a perfect warm-up for finals. Brian To'o showed he's back to his best with a hat-trick while Nathan Cleary could even sit out the final few minutes when the match was won. Blake Taaffe put his hand up to fill Latrell Mitchell's void for the Rabbitohs with a composed display at fullback as Wayne Bennett's understrength team defeated St George Illawarra on Saturday. The Rabbitohs have lost five straight against Penrith, including a 56-12 humiliation in Dubbo earlier this year.
SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 12
Second Elimination Final
6-Parramatta v 7-Newcastle at Browne Park, 4.05pm
Both teams come into the finals on the back of humbling defeats. The Eels, who rested several key players, were thumped by Penrith at CBUS Super Stadium while Newcastle were undone by Brisbane. After spending most of the season in the top four, Parramatta have no second chance and Brad Arthur is desperate to overcome a finals record that boasts just one win from six finals as a head coach. Newcastle have lost three straight to the Eels including a 40-4 thrashing earlier this year.