Matulino creates an NRL first in 100th game

Tuesday 19 June 2012 6:05 PM
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Vodafone Warriors prop Ben Matulino created an even more significant slice of history than initially thought when he appeared in his 100th NRL game in Saturday night’s encounter with Cronulla.
Checks have confirmed he didn’t merely become the first Vodafone Junior Warriors NYC graduate to play 100 first-grade games for the club; he is indeed the first NYC product from all 16 clubs to achieve the feat since the Toyota Cup’s came into existence five years ago.
A foundation NYC player in 2008, Matulino also made his first-grade debut as a 19-year-old the same season.
Having played every match in 2010 and 2011 – 53 in all – the Wellington-born and raised forward started the 2012 season with 86 appearances, two more than Parramatta halfback Chris Sandow, a South Sydney NYC player in the under-20 competition’s opening season.
In his 14th game of the year on Saturday night – his 67th consecutive appearance – Matulino became the 20th player to reach the 100-game mark for the Vodafone Warriors since the club’s debut in 1995.
Sandow, who has played 12 times for the Eels this year, is set to become the next NYC graduate to bring up his 100th appearance, sitting on 96 at the moment.
It says much for the Vodafone Warriors’ commitment to its development policy that Matulino’s front row partner Russell Packer is in line to become the third NYC product to amass 100 NRL appearances. Packer, like Matulino, also made his NRL debut in 2008 and currently sits on 91 NRL games.
Matulino, only 23, has the further distinction of having already played in 12 Tests for the Kiwis including the 2010 Four Nations final triumph against Australia at Suncorp Stadium.
Other NYC graduates closing in on 100 NRL games are Brisbane hooker Andrew McCullough (91), his team-mate and Kiwi back rower Alex Glenn (89) and Canterbury-Bankstown prop Aiden Tolman (89).
 

Old Sid

1st Grade Fringe
Nov 8, 2014
679
Hate the fact that in a pack lacking "big bodies" we're letting probably our biggest body go. Then again Ben for mine has looked like he's been in cruise mode for a few seasons now instead of the pack leader that he should have been. Will probably benefit getting out of this enviroment
With you all the way... cruise mode for far too long and going through the motions. He's certainly not a leader. Simon tries to turn around the ship week after week, not Ben. Team not trying, Ben not trying....

Best of luck to him. We need fresh blood.
 
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Fazz

1st Grade Fringe
Apr 12, 2012
4,755
Hamilton, New Zealand
What fucks me off most is all the time and money we have spent developing him and the 3 years will be his prime years as a prop...

You might be right, but to be fair, the club probably knows more about his knees than we do. If they thought the same, surely they'd be dropping the cash to keep him - on his day Ben is a beast. I just fear that we may have already seen 'his day' due to the bung knees.

Will be pulling for 'Wests Warriors' next year. They almost look more like the Warriors than the Warriors at this point. Wouldn't be hard to jump on board with them as a 'second team' at all.
 

WellingtonOrca

1st Grade Fringe
Aug 14, 2012
1,583
With you all the way... cruise mode for far too long and going through the motions. He's certainly not a leader. Simon tries to turn around the ship week after week, not Ben. Team not trying, Ben not trying....

Best of luck to him. We need fresh blood.

Ben's idea of leading was taking his two proteges out for a night of tramadol and red-bull.
 

bruce

Warriors 1st Grader
Contributor
Sep 1, 2015
16,702
I think it's pretty clear Ben wasn't having fun with his football. Packer and Rapira leaving I'm guessing contributed to it. Him and Rusty will be an absolute force next season.
If I were the Tigers I would be worried about the Rusty effect. My problem is not so much that they have let Ben go, but that they did so without having a replacement.
 

matiunz

All Out!
Contributor
Jul 15, 2013
7,693
Sydney
If I were the Tigers I would be worried about the Rusty effect. My problem is not so much that they have let Ben go, but that they did so without having a replacement.

I think there's a difference between "letting someone go" and someone that wants to go, I think Ben was the later I seem to recall we only just held on to him last contract as he wanted to follow Ivan to the Panthers.
 

bruce

Warriors 1st Grader
Contributor
Sep 1, 2015
16,702
I think there's a difference between "letting someone go" and someone that wants to go, I think Ben was the later I seem to recall we only just held on to him last contract as he wanted to follow Ivan to the Panthers.
We shouldn't have let him go either, but I get your gist, cheers.
 

mt.wellington

Warriors Orange Peeler
Jun 21, 2012
22,747
Mt. Wellington, Auckland
I think there's a difference between "letting someone go" and someone that wants to go, I think Ben was the later I seem to recall we only just held on to him last contract as he wanted to follow Ivan to the Panthers.
Ben wanted to reunite with his dad at the Panthers but was convinced otherwise after Doyle sold him the vision for the club. Guess Ben didn't see it. Was shocked to hear that story.

Sure if Mannering wasn't getting paid a good chunk of change he would have left as well...
 

bruce

Warriors 1st Grader
Contributor
Sep 1, 2015
16,702
Ben wanted to reunite with his dad at the Panthers but was convinced otherwise after Doyle sold him the vision for the club. Guess Ben didn't see it. Was shocked to hear that story.

Sure if Mannering wasn't getting paid a good chunk of change he would have left as well...
I cannot see too many players falling for Doyle's spin now. It seems like Kearney is our future, for better or for worse.
Off topic, but I remember reading that Mannering was number one on Ivan's shopping list...by a country mile.
 

Blain

1st Grade Fringe
Apr 18, 2012
2,240
Wellington
Ben leaving is best for him and the club. TBH I wouldn't say he has earnt a 250k upgrade in contract over the past couple seasons, but there's no doubting what he does on the field.

Both him and the club need a fresh start, pretty obvious to see. Good luck Ben, hope you get back to being on of the comps premiere props. Will be weird seeing him in those terrible Tigers shirts..
 

snake77

Warriors 1st Grader
Jul 12, 2013
9,212
Auckland
It will be interesting to see how he goes next year. A change of scenery would do him good. Also interesting to see how he goes fitness wise with the speculation around the state of his knees.

As a Warriors supporter seeing him go well somewhere else will be a bit hard to take. But for depth for the Kiwis it would be good to see him back to his best.
 

Crappy McFukkup

Warriors Bench Player
Jun 28, 2016
119
Quality footballer no doubt ... Taumolo 2016/2017 aside there is no better rounded forward in league than Ben at his best. He can hit like a freight train, offload with the best of them and he's just a menace when he's in the mood.

I reckon he finds his best again at the Tigers, and personally I can't wait to see him dishing it up on D ... I just hope he can bury that right shoulder right into Billy "The Real Grub" Slater's sternum on one of those inside ruck trick-plays they like to do ... If only Manu wasn't "star struck" and smashed Slater as hard as he could that fateful Anzac night match in Melbourne 2015(?), then the career of that; cheap-shot, ankle locking, heel-hooking QLD Grub could already be done and dusted... Maybe Benny can find his best and slap a brutal shot on Slater the Grub to finish him once and for good (before the Origin series ideally - thanks Ben).
 
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