The Warriors’ two longest-serving players will return from injury in Saturday’s double-header clash with the North Queensland Cowboys at Mount Smart Stadium.
Simon Mannering has been named to make his first appearance of 2018 off the bench following his recovery from a shoulder problem, while Shaun Johnson returns at halfback after sitting out last weekend’s win over the Roosters with a groin injury.
The only other change to the Warriors’ 17 sees Sam Lisone come back onto the interchange after serving a one-match suspension.
The inclusions mean Mason Lino, Ligi Sao and Chris Satae – all outstanding against the Roosters – drop back to the reserve spots, with Anthony Gelling, who made a debut cameo in Round 4, surprisingly retained in on the bench.
Sao would be particularly unlucky to miss out to Gelling after featuring in all four of the Warriors’ wins so far.
Front-rower James Gavet remains on the injured list due to a hamstring complaint, with Bunty Afoa and Agnatius Paasi to start again up front following standout displays against the Roosters.
Nine members of the run-on side named today – the backline minus Johnson, and forwards Adam Blair, Tohu Harris and Issac Luke – are set to make their fifth starting appearance of the season.
Mannering, the Warriors’ all-time games record-holder, will play his 281st first grade game, while Johnson – the 12th-most capped player in Warriors history – will run out for his 147th NRL game for the club.
Mannering, Johnson and Lisone set to return in Saturday's SKYCITY Auckland Double Header 🙌
— Vodafone Warriors (@NZWarriors) April 3, 2018
WARRIORS V NORTH QUEENSLAND COWBOYS
Mount Smart Stadium, Auckland
7.30pm, Saturday, April 7, 2018
1 ROGER TUIVASA-SHECK (c)
2 DAVID FUSITU’A
3 PETA HIKU
4 SOLOMONE KATA
5 KEN MAUMALO
6 BLAKE GREEN
7 SHAUN JOHNSON
8 BUNTY AFOA
9 ISSAC LUKE
10 AGNATIUS PAASI
11 LEIVAHA PULU
12 TOHU HARRIS
13 ADAM BLAIR
14 JAZZ TEVAGA
15 SAM LISONE
16 SIMON MANNERING
17 ANTHONY GELLING
18 LIGI SAO
20 MASON LINO
21 CHRIS SATAE
22 CHARNZE NICOLL-KLOKSTAD
HEAD COACH | STEPHEN KEARNEY