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Kearney names unchanged Warriors team

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 4/04/2017

Stephen Kearney © Getty Images Stephen Kearney The Warriors have named an unchanged team for their sixth-round NRL clash against the Parramatta Eels at Mount Smart Stadium on Sunday.

Coach Stephen Kearney has stuck with the line-up which struck in the 78th minute to down the Gold Coast Titans 28-22 last week.

Bodene Thompson has been named in the second row after playing only the first half against the Titans.

Kearney brought James Gavet off the bench to start last weekend but has again listed Charlie Gubb as veteran prop Jacob Lillyman's starting front-row partner.

The extended bench comprises the same eight players selected last week.

Kearney said he was happy with the way his team lifted in the second half against the Titans, particularly the forwards, after they trailed 22-12 at halftime.

A vastly improved defensive display kept the Titans scoreless in the last 40 minutes, while the Warriors added 16 points through tries to Roger Tuivasa-Sheck, club debutant Kieran Foran and Ryan Hoffman with the match-winner in the 78th minute.

Kearney said the second half provided the kind of template the Warriors had been working on in the preseason and in the opening rounds of the competition.

With a completion rate of 18 from 21 sets, they were able to dominate possession and field position in the second spell, limiting the Titans to just 13 sets.

And after making 19 errors in the 12-26 loss to St George Illawarra, the Warriors cut their error rate to only five last Sunday.

The Warriors and the Eels come into the match with identical 2-3 win-loss records, although Parramatta have lost their last three to Gold Coast (14-26), Cronulla (6-20) and Canberra (18-30) after beating Manly and St George Illawarra in the opening two rounds.

Warriors: Roger Tuivasa-Sheck (captain), Blake Ayshford, David Fusitua, Solomone Kata, Ken Maumalo, Kieran Foran, Shaun Johnson, Charlie Gubb, Issac Luke, Jacob Lillyman, Bodene Thompson, Ryan Hoffman, Simon Mannering.

Interchange: Nathaniel Roache, James Gavet, Samuel Lisone, Liligiifo Sao. Reserves: Albert Vete, Bunty Afoa, Mafoa'aeata Hingano, Mason Lino.

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