General Mannering Plays His Part In Warriors Run Of Consistency

sebastian_old

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Warriors league team
League: Mannering plays his part in Warriors' run of consistency

1.00pm Monday July 3, 2006
By Robert Lowe


Youngster Simon Mannering is helping the New Zealand Warriors build something he hasn't experienced at the club before in his short National Rugby League (NRL) career.

The big centre's two early tries in the 28-22 win over Penrith in Auckland on Saturday night set the Warriors up for their fourth win in a row.

It's the first time the Warriors have strung together a sequence like that since 2003, and they will be looking to extend it to five when they are away to the Bulldogs next Sunday.

"We haven't been that consistent over the past couple of years," Mannering said.

"I guess it's the start of something new for us to get some consistency going."

Mannering, who also plays in the second row, made his NRL debut last year, when he had seven games without getting on the scoresheet.

So far in this campaign, the 19-year-old, who has taken over Leeds-bound Kiwi Clinton Toopi's starting spot, has dotted down six times in nine appearances.

His first four-pointer against the Panthers came in a blindside move involving a dummy half snipe from Nathan Fien.

His second was an impressive solo effort that began when Penrith halfback Preston Campbell produced a bomb that went straight up in the air.

Fellow Panther Danny Galea gathered the ball but threw it to Mannering, who busted through the tackle of fullback Nick Youngquest on a 60m run to tryline.

"The guy just chucked it to me and I saw the open spaces and thought I'd give it a bit of a crack," he said. "I didn't score any last year but I'm getting the confidence this year and it's all starting to come together."

The cold, dewy conditions at Ericsson Stadium made handling difficult and both sides were guilty of numerous errors.

"We didn't play our best footy," Mannering admitted. "But it goes to show we can win games without playing our best, so when we're on our game, we can really compete with any team."

With the Warriors having highlighted the need to back up from their record win over South Sydney, the main thing was avoiding defeat against the Panthers, he said.

Posting a 66-0 scoreline one week and then losing the next was "just not on".

"It was a major talking point through the week," Mannering said. "We came through in the end, which was good to see."

As for making the playoffs -- the Warriors are now four points outside the top eight -- Mannering echoed the line taken by coach Ivan Cleary and other players.

"If it comes to that so be it but we're not looking at it at all," he said.

"We don't even look at the table. We just want to take each game as it comes and hopefully to keep winning each one."

Mannering is one of trio of youthful outside backs in the Warriors' starting 13 of recent weeks.

He forms a partnership on the left-hand side with Kiwi winger Manu Vatuvei, 20, while Patrick Ah Van, 18, is on the other wing.

Vatuvei and Ah Van each created one of the Warriors' three other tries against Penrith.

A 50m bust by Vatuvei ended with skipper Ruben Wiki grabbing his fifth touchdown of the season, while a 50m break by Ah Van was finished off by centre Tony Martin.

- NZPA
 

warriors4life_old

Guest
Yeah, Mannering has really stepped his game up a notch this year after coming back from injury. He has proven that he is worthy of one of the centre positions, and good on him.
 

sebastian_old

Guest
I agree, i also like Simon at centre i don't want him to move to the 2nd row for at least a few years. I feel good knowing his defense will stand up at centre as our backs have been el suspecto for the last few years, he hardly ever misses tackles & puts on some crackers!!
 

warriorfaithful*_old

Guest
sebastian said:
I agree, i also like Simon at centre i don't want him to move to the 2nd row for at least a few years. I feel good knowing his defense will stand up at centre as our backs have been el suspecto for the last few years, he hardly ever misses tackles & puts on some crackers!!

Yeah i agree. Keep him in the centres for now
 

Kav_old

Guest
He's a natural centre; big and strong with good positional sense and links well with his winger.

Kav
 

blez_old

Guest
Yeah, there has been some talk of moving him into the pack, but IMO he is blossoming into a fine centre. He should be one of the key cogs to our backline for a long time.
 

commonsense_old

Guest
he has a great football mind. i reckon put him anywhere and he will play well there.

he is doing awesome in the centres, but i would like to see him move into the pack oneday. that would increase his workload and im sure he would be up for it. if he does he needs too a few kilos though. to get to the size of sbw would be tops.

but at the time being, with the warriors being skinny in the centres i think he needs to be there.
 

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