Team List Rd 17: Warriors vs Cowgirls - Friend and Fish are in!

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01 Jan 1970 12:00PM

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Experienced hooker Nathan Friend returns right on schedule to bolster the Vodafone Warriors for their crucial 17th-round NRL Women in League clash against the North Queensland Cowboys at Mount Smart Stadium on Sunday (4.00pm kick-off NZ time).
Friend, out of action since breaking his jaw in the 30-20 win against Brisbane on May 05, provides a huge boost for a squad which has endured a steady stream of injuries throughout the campaign so far.
Also coming back into the side from injury is Glen Fisiiahi, who has been named on the left wing after being out of contention for the 19-20 loss to Cronulla with a knee injury. With veteran Manu Vatuvei out for a month with a knee injury, Vodafone Junior Warrior Omar Slaimankhel made his NRL debut as a late replacement against the Sharks.
Friend will be making his 145th career appearance, Fisiiahi just his ninth and his fifth this season.
“It’s good timing to have Nathan back from his injury,” said Vodafone Warriors head coach Brian McClennan.
“We’ve certainly missed the experience he brings to the hooker’s role so he’ll really help us a lot there.
“And with Manu out for a bit after his surgery and Glen fit again, it’s a big chance for him on the wing.”
While Friend and Fisiiahi have been recalled, McClennan has also done some reshuffling among the forwards with Elijah Taylor switching back to the No 13 jersey and Lewis Brown – used at hooker against Cronulla – named as a starting second rower. A five-man bench has been listed comprising Jacob Lillyman, Micheal Luck, Sione Lousi, Feleti Mateo and Steve Rapira.
Sunday’s clash (match day sponsor: SKYCITY) will have a real pink hue about it as the Vodafone Warriors mark the NRL’s Women in League initiative. The NRL team will be outfitted in a new pink-toned strip produced by Canterbury of New Zealand while Vodafone Warriors members and all other fans are urged to join the theme by wearing something pink on the day.
With fifth-placed North Queensland sitting on 20 points the Vodafone Warriors (16) have a big opportunity to make inroads on a day which will also be of special significance for Ben Matulino and Micheal Luck.
Matulino will be playing at home for the first time since making his 100th NRL appearance in the club’s last outing against Cronulla. It will provide members and supporters with the chance to acknowledge Matulino’s historic achievement as the first NYC graduate to play 100 NRL games (as well as being the club’s 20th 100-game player).
Luck made his comeback against Cronulla, his first game in almost nine months since the 2011 NRL grand final. On Sunday he’ll play at home for the first time in 10 months having last appeared at Mount Smart Stadium in the last regular game of the 2011 campaign last September, which also happened to be against his old North Queensland club.
And standoff James Maloney will be out to build on his feat of becoming only the second player in the club’s history to score 500 points (Stacey Jones with 674 points was the first). Maloney’s seven points from three goals and a field goal against Cronulla lifted his career tally to 503.
A big day at Mount Smart Stadium with the Vodafone Junior Warriors kicking off at 1.45pm will continue afterwards with a post-match event at The Nation’s Clubrooms at SKYCITY. The entire Vodafone Warriors squad will be in attendance at 7.30pm to meet members and fans while the player of the day winners since the April 15 match against South Sydney will also receive their prize packs. Everyone is invited to join in by going to SKYCITY after the game.


Big opportunity this week to notch a win...No Thurston, Tamou, Bowen or Tate....all in the QLD squad and not playing.....time for a big win to boost the for & against.
Who's dropping off the bench? Lousi is my pick. Not sold on the Fish on the wing seen him there in the past and he was weak.
Who's dropping off the bench? Lousi is my pick. Not sold on the Fish on the wing seen him there in the past and he was weak.

I'd be more concerned if he was playing FB!.. But nah, i'm not sold on him as a winger either.. Looks like he'll have 3 games to try and change our minds.. (assuming he doesn't have a shocker and is dropped for Omar) ... not that it matters at all what any of us think.
Not sold on the Fish on the wing seen him there in the past and he was weak.
I am not overly keen on Fish on the wing either, although TBH I wasn't that impressed with Omars debut. I am certainly willing to give a young player time to find his feet and wouldn't not pick him because of that one performance, but some were trying to make it sound like he had a good game which I think is a stretch
I wonder how much space Fish will get playing outside Hurrel

Think he'll be playing outside Henry, won't he? Henry and Konrad always play on the opposite side it says they'll be playing on the teamsheets.. (why??)

How much space he'll get playing outside Henry? I think we all know the answer to that..
Think he'll be playing outside Henry, won't he? Henry and Konrad always play on the opposite side it says they'll be playing on the teamsheets.. (why??)

How much space he'll get playing outside Henry? I think we all know the answer to that..
hmm, considering its origin time and the cowboys will be without their star players, I think he should be outside Hurrel. If Thurston etc were playing it would be a different story as defence would be mouch more important. But I guess we'll have to wait and see.
This suggests to me that maybe Omar is on his way to another club, as rumoured. I see no other reason to play Fish instead, unless they just want him to gain experience for a permanent switch next season.
Fuck. Sexy looking team other than Fish on the wing. Hurrell and Fish on one side does not fill me with confidence at all in defense.

If we can't beat such a depleted Cowboys team, it's season over imo.
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I would have kept Henry on Fish's side.

Maybe they want Hurrell to be more involved - we tend to track that way in offense. Actually, could be a smart move. Imagine Hurrell on the end of Johnson's left-hand cutout pass. Badass.
Great to see Friend taking over from Brown.

Not too keen on Fish at wing (to be honest, don't particularly like him at FB either). I think if they are contemplating retaining Omar next year, why not test him a few more times. Fish is locked in for a few years yet, so timing is not a concern.

I think Fish has realised his chances of becoming our first choice fullback are slim to none, so made the statement a few weeks back that he would like more time at wing. Perhaps he was feeling a bit of pressure coming from Omar. I like the fact that Omar is so much more defensively minded than Fish but can also score plenty of points. I think in a Warriors squad whose defence is generally not the best, they should be looking for players with a stronger defensive mentality than Fish.

I would hope Steve Raps drops off the bench. Lousi deserves the spot. though his performances of late haven't been awesome, he filled in at prop very well while we were stretched. He deserves the selection a lot more than Steve Rapira.

I'm pleased to see Mateo moved from Lock. I prefer him on one side.
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i thought omar played very well apart from that first up error. wet conditions he was solid and was able to read the play well and cleaned up quite a few tricky grubbers. dont like tinkering with our back row again!!! but very solid looking team. with the cowboys down on playing strength and away from home should be a big warriors win. but funnier things have happened.....
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