NYC PREVIEW: Penrith v Vodafone Junior Warriors

Halfback Mason Lino is a big loss for the Vodafone Junior Warriors for their NYC clash against Penrith tonight. Photo: Photosport.


Vodafone Junior Warriors coach John Ackland has some changes to his side for tonights 10th-round battle with table-topping NYC side Penrith at Centrebet Stadium (5.15pm kick-off; 7.15pm NZT).


First-choice halfback Mason Lino and frontline prop James Taylor are both out with injuries while Ackland is also trying another option on the right wing with Metia Lesati coming in to make his NYC debut.


Linos loss is a significant setback both as the sides playmaker and goal-kicker.


Eko Malu, used only twice previously this season, starts at halfback while centre Solomone Kata will take over the goal-kicking. In Taylors absence Vince Afoa starts in the front row along with the well-established Albert Vete.


Lisati (19), a Mount Roskill Grammar School product and Bay Roskill junior, comes into the side for Viliami Lolohea.


After a surprising 30-32 loss to Gold Coast two weeks ago, the Vodafone Junior Warriors impressed in their 34-24 victory over Canterbury-Bankstown at Westpac Stadium last Saturday.


They lie fifth on 11 points on the points table going into tonights clash, five points behind the Panthers who have lost only one game this season.


VODAFONE JUNIOR WARRIORS v PENRITH PANTHERS


Centrebet Stadium, Penrith

5.15pm, Saturday, May 18

Referee: Ziggy Przeklaska-Adamski


VODAFONE JUNIOR WARRIORS


1NGATAUA HUKATAI

2METIA LESATI

3SOLOMONE KATA

4DAVID FUSITUA

5ALAMOTI FINAU

6TUIMOALA LOLOHEA

7EKO MALU

8VINCE AFOA

9MICHAEL SIO

10ALBERT VETE

11RAYMOND FAITALA-MARINER

12ADAM TUIMAVAVE-GERRARD

13DAVID BHANA (c)

Interchange:

14KURT ROBINSON

15SAM LISONE

16ERIC NEWBIGGING

17KOUMA SAMSON

18STEDMAN LEFAU


HEAD COACH: JOHN ACKLAND