Hamstring niggle rules Vatuvei out
Saturday 21 July 2012 4:39 PM
Manu Vatuvei’s quest for his 100 NRL tries will have to wait a week.
The 26-year-old 146-game veteran felt a hamstring twinge late in last week’s 8-10 loss to Brisbane and isn’t being risked tonight.
He scored early against the Broncos to take his total for the season to eight and his career tally to 98, tantalisingly close to becoming the first Vodafone Warriors player to top NRL 100 tries.
Omar Slaimankhel will come onto the left wing for his fifth NRL appearance while Konrad Hurrell returns in the centres after missing the Brisbane trip with a foot injury.
Hurrell (20), who has 12 tries in 12 matches so far this season, takes up his spot at right centre once again with his stand-in Lewis Brown moving to the bench alongside Sione Lousi, Jacob Lillyman and Steve Rapira.
A feature of tonight’s game day programme sponsored by TNT is the launching of the Dream Chaser Foundation – A Chace Topperwien Charity named after the three-year-old Whakatane boy who died last month from a rare form of leukaemia.
The Vodafone Warriors have been running an auction on trademe.co.nz to raise funds for the charity. To see the lots click on the link: http://www.trademe.co.nz/Members/Listings.aspx?member=4278262
TNT has pledged cash for points in support of the foundation by donating $100 for every try, $50 for every goal and $25 for every field goal scored by the club’s two teams tonight.
VODAFONE WARRIORS v NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS
Mount Smart Stadium, Auckland
7.30pm, Saturday, July 21
1 KEVIN LOCKE
2 BILL TUPOU
3 BEN HENRY
4 KONRAD HURRELL
18 OMAR SLAIMANKHEL
6 JAMES MALONEY
7 SHAUN JOHNSON
8 RUSSELL PACKER
9 NATHAN FRIEND
10 BEN MATULINO
11 FELETI MATEO
12 SIMON MANNERING (c)
13 ELIJAH TAYLOR
14 LEWIS BROWN
15 SIONE LOUSI
16 JACOB LILLYMAN
17 STEVE RAPIRA