JACK Wighton has been named in the centres for the Canberra Raiders’ round one National Rugby League clash with the Penrith Panthers.
Debuting on the wing for the Raiders last season, the Bloomfield Tigers junior made a surprise comeback from a toe injury to play in the centres for the Green Machine in their semi-final loss to the Rabbitohs last August.
Wighton has again impressed throughout pre-season, earning selection in the Indigenous All Stars side in February, and will partner another Western Division product in the form of Wellington Cowboys back Blake Ferguson in the centres on Sunday.
Wighton was rested for the Raiders’ last trial with a fractured hand but is a welcome addition for round one following the withdrawal of gun fullback Josh Dugan.
Daniel Mortimer is also reaping the rewards of a strong pre-season, named on the Sydney Roosters’ bench for tomorrow night’s blockbuster with the South Sydney Rabbitohs.
An Orange junior, Mortimer will feature off the bench in a new-look tri-colours outfit with star recruits Michael Jennings and another SJS-CYMS product, five-eighth James Maloney, also named in Trent Robinson’s round one team.
Code-hopper Sonny Bill Williams will make his long-awaited NRL comeback off the bench alongside Mortimer.
Skipper of the Newtown Jets’ NSW Cup winning side last year, Mortimer is likely to come on and play a hooking role for the Roosters in tomorrow night’s season opener.