IN a timely boost to the Penrith Panthers, high-profile backrower Sika Manu returned from a broken thumb against the Cronulla Sharks on Saturday.
The former Melbourne Storm premiership winner was instrumental in holding the Panthers' forward pack together during the early part of the season and he will need to do the same again with Matt Robinson, Nigel Plum and Sam McKendry on the sidelines.
Manu's return sees Lewis Brown move to the centres and Wes Naiqama dropped to the NSW Cup.
The Panthers received good news on the injury front this week with Adam Docker cleared of a broken jaw from the weekend game against Newcastle.
Former Panther Michael Gordon will line-up against his former team for the first team. Former Panthers captain Luke Lewis remains injured from Origin III.