The Vodafone Warriors quest for a fifth straight win will be in the hands of a familiar combination in Sundays 16th-round NRL clash against Brisbane at Mount Smart Stadium (4.05pm kick-off; match day sponsor: Herald on Sunday).


Head coach Matthew Elliott today named the same 17 players used in the 23-12 win over the Sydney Roosters on June 16 with fullback Kevin Locke and prop Suaia Matagi added on a six-man bench.


Locke is back in the fame after recovering from the hip flexor injury which ruled him out of the wins over Manly and the Roosters while Matagi stays in the mix after being included in the initial squad last time.


While Ben Matulino has been named in jersey No 10 and Russell Packer on the bench in No 14, its still anticipated Packer will start as he has done recently alongside fellow front rower Sam Rapira. The formula has served the Vodafone Warriors well with Matulino and Jacob Lillyman making a huge impact off the bench. In the wins against Newcastle, Brisbane, Manly and the Roosters, Matulinos series of metres gained reads 136, 123, 159 and 147 while Lillymans numbers have been 126, 159, 154 and 89; he played only 31 minutes in his last game.


Lillyman will be back with the Vodafone Warriors on Thursday after filling the 18th man role with Queensland for tomorrow nights second State of Origin battle against New South Wales in Brisbane.


Like the Vodafone Warriors, the Broncos will also be coming off a bye not only refreshed but reinforced by the expected presence of their Queensland Origin players Justin Hodges, Sam Thaiday, Corey Parker and Matt Gillett who all missed the heavy 18-56 loss to the Vodafone Warriors at Suncorp Stadium on June 3.


Our next match is always our toughest and this one against Brisbane will be a huge challenge for us, said Elliott.


We worked really hard and made some significant improvements before the bye but we all know theres a long way still to go.


We might be facing the same club again for the second time in a matter of weeks but the team itself will be a lot different to the one we met last time.


With 10 tries in their June 3 meeting with Brisbane, the Vodafone Warriors have scored 25 tries and a total of 125 points in their last four games but more importantly theyve restricted their opponents to 18 points or less each time, just 58 points in total.


Winger Manu Vatuveis spectacular 92-metre try against the Roosters was his ninth in his last eight appearances, lifting his career tally to 111 in 162 games. In fact, he has scored 18 tries in his last 21 games stretching back to round 10 last year, ranking him among the NRLs top strike weapons over the past year.


The Vodafone Warriors-sponsored Kiwi Ferns will be special guests at Mount Smart Stadium on Sunday as they prepare to leave for England for the Womens Rugby League World Cup. Winners of the trophy each of the three times it has been contested, the Kiwi Ferns will be hosted in the Club Lounge and will be presented to the crowd to be farewelled.


CLICK HERE TO BUY TICKETS TO SUNDAY'S TRIPLEHEADER AT MOUNT SMART STADIUM


VODAFONE WARRIORS v BRISBANE BRONCOS


Mount Smart Stadium, Auckland

4.05pm, Sunday, June 30

Referees: Gerard Sutton and Henry Perenara


VODAFONE WARRIORS


1GLEN FISIIAHI

2NGANI LAUMAPE

3DANE NIELSEN

4KONRAD HURRELL

5MANU VATUVEI

6THOMAS LEULUAI

7SHAUN JOHNSON

8SAM RAPIRA

9NATHAN FRIEND

10BEN MATULINO

11FELETI MATEO

12SIMON MANNERING (c)

13ELIJAH TAYLOR

Interchange:

14RUSSELL PACKER

15JACOB LILLYMAN

16TODD LOWRIE

17DOMINIQUE PEYROUX

18 KEVIN LOCKE

20SUAIA MATAGI


HEAD COACH: MATTHEW ELLIOTT