CHANGES could be the theme of the evening as Warrington Wolves take on Leeds Rhinos at The Halliwell Jones Stadium.

The Rhinos have naturally made several with one eye on their appearance in the Challenge Cup Final on Saturday and it is set to be a youthful Leeds side that takes the field tonight.

But what sort of team will Steve Price send out to face them?

> WATCH: Why Wire have to be ruthless against youthful Leeds Rhinos

Several key players are absent, with Blake Austin, Mike Cooper and Joe Philbin not involved while Jake Mamo (knee) and Ben Murdoch-Masila (abductor muscle) injured.

Here is a look at the 21-man squad The Wire announced yesterday…

Sitaleki Akauola, Matty Ashton, Keanan Brand, Josh Charnley, Daryl Clark, Jason Clark, Ben Currie, Matt Davis, Eribe Doro, Anthony Gelling, Chris Hill, Jack Hughes, Luis Johnson, Toby King, Ellis Longstaff, Declan Patton, Stefan Ratchford, Ellis Robson, Josh Thewlis, Danny Walker, Gareth Widdop

From that, we look at the routes Price could go down in choosing his final 17…

Warrington Guardian:

Steve Price. Picture by Mike Boden


The Wire are currently on a three-match losing run in all competitions – a streak that has ended their defence of the Challenge Cup and put them outside of Super League’s top four for now at least.

With the team struggling to convert dominance into points of late, all eyes will be on whichever half-back pairing is chosen tonight.

With Austin not involved, it will be a new pairing with Declan Patton and Gareth Widdop the likely candidates.

Warrington Guardian:

Declan Patton – impressive in the games he has appeared in since the restart – could get another chance this evening. Picture by Mike Boden

However, could Stefan Ratchford be moved into the halves with youngster Josh Thewlis slotting in at full-back?

Vote for your preferred half-back partnership for tonight’s game below


There will be changes up front with Cooper and Philbin missing.

Chris Hill, Jack Hughes, Ben Currie, Jason Clark, Matt Davis and Ellis Robson remain from Friday’s game against Wigan, with Sitaleki Akauola, Eribe Doro, Luis Johnson and Ellis Longstaff also in contention.

Robson did not get off the bench against Wigan, so Price may well be minded to give him some minutes this evening.

Warrington Guardian:

Ellis Robson did not make it off the bench against Wigan on Friday. Picture by Mike Boden

He may also be mindful of regulating the minutes of his more senior forwards given the short turnaround from the last game, but a lengthy gap between this game and the next – the trip to Catalans Dragons on October 26 – would allow for a longer rest.

> Dates, venues and kick off times for Super League Rounds 18 and 19 confirmed


Josh Charnley and Matty Ashton look set for spots on the wing, with first-choice centres Anthony Gelling and Toby King in the squad.

> Why tonight's game would be a special one for Toby King if selected

However, the presence of Keanan Brand within the squad opens up the possibility of one of them being given a breather.

Warrington Guardian:

Could Keanan Brand be given another opportunity to impress? Picture by Mike Boden

Furthermore, the last game Akauola played for The Wire was on the wing in the Super League loss to Salford two weeks ago – could he do so again?