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Warriors injury woes eased as Mannering starts

Newshub logoNewshub 17/04/2018 Brad Lewis

a close up of Simon Mannering © Provided by MediaWorks NZ Limited

Simon Mannering has been named in the Warriors starting line-up for the first time this season, easing Stephen Kearney's concerns.

Leivaha Pulu will likely miss the next two weeks after hurting his knee in the round six clash with the Broncos.

Pulu joins James Gavet, Nathaniel Roache, Gerard Beal and Solomone Kata in the injury ward, although the barnstorming center has been named, he is unlikely to play.

Isaiah Papali'I has been named on an extended bench, less than a month after injuring himself against the Canberra Raiders.

With ex-Gold Coast Titan Pulu facing an extended spell on the sidelines, 31-yeart-old Mannering slots into the starting second rower's role for his 283rd NRL appearance.

Mannering has played 57-minutes in two bench appearances in 2018, running for 140 metres, making 56 total tackles.

Albert Veta has been selected for the first time this season after serving a one game suspension in round one, the prop has had to bide his time in reserve grade due to the terrific form the Warriors have shown in their five win, one loss start to the season.

Coach Stephen Kearney has once again named an extended bench for the home clash with the Dragons, including wing Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad who like Vete has yet to feature in 2018.

The Dragons started their 2018 campaign with a 34-12 win over Brisbane before beating Cronulla 20-16, Gold Coast 54-8, Newcastle 30-12, South Sydney 16-12 and Cronulla 40-20 last Friday night.

The last time the Warriors and the Dragons met at Mount Smart Stadium in 2016, the home side won 26-10.

It remains just the fifth time the Warriors have beaten St George Illawarra in 26 encounters.

Warriors: Roger Tuivasa-Sheck (captain), David Fusitu'a, Peta Hiku, Solomone Kata, Ken Maumalo, Blake Green, Shaun Johnson, Bunty Afoa, Issac Luke, Agnatius Paasi, Simon Mannering, Tohu Harris, Adam Blair.

Interchange: Jazz Tevaga, Sam Lisone, Albert Vete, Anthony Gelling, Chris Satae, Mason Lino, Isaiah Papali'i, Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad.

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