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Wiki solid in Nines comeback despite loss

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 4/02/2017 Angelo Risso

There's a bit of life in the old war horse yet.

Returning Warriors rugby league legend Ruben Wiki has emerged unscathed from his first competitive hit-out in eight years, playing most of the match as his Nines side fell 15-11 to Manly.

The 44-year-old, a former Kiwis captain and NRL premiership winner with Canberra, looked solid at Eden Park and made several hit-ups.

But it wasn't enough to get the Warriors over the line, as a barging Curtis Sironen effort gave the Sea Eagles a late victory against the home side.

A groin injury to star halfback Shaun Johnson in the warm-up made matters worse for them, but the 26-year-old is expected to play later in the tournament.

"As you can see I survived, but it was fun to get out there with the boys," Wiki said.

"They keep running away from me, or is it me trying to avoid them?"

Yet the Warriors will have little time to dwell on their defeat, with another pool match against a fearsome Parramatta outfit later on Saturday.

Wiki said he saw enough in his side's loss to feel confident they could turn things around against the Eels, who earlier crushed St George Illawarra 32-11.

He also wasn't opposed to more minutes out on the paddock before his 48-hour comeback draws to a close on Sunday evening.

"They're human like us," Wiki said.

"If we complete as much as we can in the game, it gives us a good chance."

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