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When will stars face their former clubs next season? NRL 2023 draw released

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The 2023 NRL draw has now been released, so it’s time to take a look at some of the potentially spicy match-ups for the upcoming season. 

As a result of the Dolphins joining the competition as an expansion team, there has been plenty of player movement.

Notably, the Parramatta Eels, Melbourne Storm and premiership holders Penrith Panthers have lost a number of key pieces.

The Sporting News takes a look at when some of the NRL’s biggest stars will face off against their old team in 2023.

MORE: NRL players and clubs operating in ‘good faith’ while salary cap is still undecided

Jesse and Kenneath Bromwich (Dolphins) vs. Melbourne Storm

The Bromwich brothers have been top servants for the Storm over the past decade, but will now likely finish their respective careers off in Redcliffe.

Despite being in their thirties, both players are premiership winners, so their experience will be useful for the Dolphins in their debut season.

Jesse and Kenneath will take on their former club once this season, when they welcome the Storm in Round 12, scheduled for Saturday, May 20.

Kieran Foran (Gold Coast Titans) vs. Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles

Foran has joined the Titans on a two-year deal from 2023, as the Sea Eagles move towards a future with Josh Schuster in the halves.

The experienced five-eighth will return to Brookvale in Round 9 on Saturday, April 29.

Signing as a rookie, he spent the first six years of his career in Manly, before moving away in 2016.

The 31-year-old then returned to the club for a two-season stint in 2021.

Viliame Kikau (Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs) vs. Penrith Panthers

After his move to Belmore was leaked in 2021, Kikau will finally make his Bulldogs debut next season.

The second-rower has spent all five years of his career with the Panthers, winning two premierships in those last two years. 

In Round 21 he will face off against his former side, with that match to take place in Penrith on Sunday, July 23.

Apisai Koroisau (Wests Tigers) vs. Penrith Panthers

In another big loss for Penrith, Koroisau will be playing for the Tigers in 2023.

The experienced hooker is set for a Round 9 reunion with his former club, when he returns to BlueBet Stadium on Saturday, April 29.

Fans will likely be keeping a close eye on Koroisau’s season in Leichhardt after he caused a stir during the Panthers’ grand final celebration. 

The 29-year-old mocked his chances of earning a fourth title with his next team, which even caught the attention of Tigers chairman Lee Hagipantelis.

Reed Mahoney (Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs) vs. Parramatta Eels

Despite only being 24 years old, Mahoney already has five seasons of NRL experience with the Eels as he heads to the Bulldogs in 2023.

The young hooker joins an exciting squad at Belmore, as general manager Phil Gould aims to rebuild the club. 

Mahoney will return to Parramatta for a clash in Round 7 on Sunday, April 16.

He will then welcome his former team to his new home in Round 15 on Monday, June 12

Isaiah Papali’i (Wests Tigers) vs. Parramatta Eels

Despite reports of a potential backflip, Papali’i is confirmed to line up for the Tigers in 2023.

After a breakout 2021 season, the second-rower has established himself as one of the game’s best in his position. 

Papali’i will play his former team in Round 6, as the Eels make the trip to Leichhardt on Monday, April 10.

Tariq Sims (Melbourne Storm) vs. St. George-Illawarra Dragons

Having lost the Bromwich brothers, Origin enforcer Sims makes his way down to Melbourne in 2023 as the Storm aim to bolster their forward pack.

He will take on his old club of six years in Round 25 when Craig Bellamy’s side play the Dragons on Saturday, August 19.

Brandon Smith (Sydney Roosters) vs. Melbourne Storm

Unable to play regularly in his preferred position of hooker with the Storm, ‘The Cheese’ has signed with the Roosters on a three-year deal from 2023.

He will return to AAMI Park in Round 6 on Thursday, April 6, in what should be an intriguing hooker battle.

Then, in Round 20, Melbourne will visit Allianz Stadium on Saturday, July 15.

Reece Walsh (Brisbane Broncos) vs. New Zealand Warriors

A promising young fullback, Walsh has moved across the ditch for 2023.

As a result of his move to Red Hill, Te Maire Martin makes way and heads to New Zealand. 

The two sides will play in Round 13 in Napier, with that clash scheduled for Saturday, May 27.

Other notable returns to former clubs

James Tamou (North Queensland Cowboys) vs. Wests Tigers – Round 12 and 18

Adam Elliot (Newcastle Knights) vs. Canberra Raiders – Round 4 and 22

Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad (New Zealand Warriors) vs. Canberra Raiders – Round 15 and 21


Credit: sportingnews.com

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