Taupau cleared to take on Tigers

Manly enforcer Martin Taupau is free to take on his former club Wests Tigers in next Monday’s grudge match after being cleared of a shoulder charge.

Taupau was put on report but not charged by the match review committee for a shot on Canterbury skipper James Graham in the Sea Eagles’ 28-6 loss on Friday.

He is now free to take on the Tigers at Leichhardt Oval in what will be his first meeting against his former side after being released following a reported fallout with coach Jason Taylor last season.

In further good news for the Sea Eagles, centre Steve Matai was also cleared of a high tackle on Dogs prop Aiden Tolman.

The Sea Eagles are desperate for a response after their first-up thrashing at the hands of the Bulldogs to get their season back on track.

Meanwhile, Cronulla prop Chris Heighington is set to miss Sunday’s local derby against St George Illawarra after being charged for a dangerous throw on North Queensland’s Ben Hannant.

Heighington will miss one match if he enters an early guilty plea however risks facing two weeks out if he fights the charge.

The Sharks’ forward pack already took a hit when skipper Paul Gallen was ruled out for four to six weeks with a knee injury suffered in the second half against the Cowboys.

Penrith’s Dallin Watene-Zelezniak has avoided scrutiny for his “squirrel grip” on Canberra enforcer Josh Papalii.

The Penrith winger sparked a melee during his side’s loss 30-22 to the Raiders on Saturday when he appeared to grab at Papalii’s groin.

However he was not charged by the match review committee despite South Sydney’s Sam Burgess being suspended for two weeks for a similar offence in 2013.

Sydney Roosters captain Jake Friend can avoid suspension with an early guilty plea for dangerous contact on South Sydney’s Bryson Goodwin.

Newcastle forward Pauli Pauli will miss one week after being charged with dangerous contact on Leivaha Pulu.

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