Jacob Lillyman will become the second Vodafone Warriors prop in successive games to reach a career milestone in the club's final regular season NRL clash against St George Illawarra at WIN Stadium in Wollongong on Saturday (3.00pm kick-off local time; 5.00pm NZT).


Last Saturday night Sam Rapira joined the Vodafone Warriors elite group of players who have appeared in 150 games for the club.


Now North Queenslander Lillyman, who started with the Vodafone Warriors in 2009, will become the 22nd player to appear in 100 games for the club after beginning his NRL career with 62 appearances for the Cowboys from 2003-2008. Last year young front rowers Ben Matulino and Russell Packer also reached the 100-game mark.


Lillyman has regularly operated in tandem with Matulino from the interchange since being converted into a full-time prop.


Jake is so reliable and so consistent, a player who gives the team exactly whats needed week in, week out, said Vodafone Warriors head coach Matthew Elliott.


His experience around the players is also invaluable and its a great reward seeing him reach a mark that means a lot at our club.


Lillyman will mark his achievement in a match of vital significance to the Vodafone Warriors. They make the trip to Wollongong sitting in 10th spot on the table, one of three teams on 26 and eyeing a chance of making the finals in the very last round of the season.


With their record 50-16 rout of Canberra last Saturday night, they climbed into the top eight for the first time this season but held eighth spot for less than 24 hours before results on Sunday pushed them out of the top half of the competition.


The final round starts with four teams vying for the last two spots in the top eight Newcastle on 27 followed by North Queensland, Gold Coast and the Vodafone Warriors on 26 while Penrith and Canberra are on 24.


To remain in contention the Vodafone Warriors will have to create history with their first win against the Dragons at WIN Stadium following a run of nine straight losses since St George Illawarra entered the competition in 1999. The clubs only success at the ground was against the Illawarra Steelers in 1996.


Should they achieve a breakthrough win, the Vodafone Warriors would then have to rely on the outcome of the two matches following theirs on Saturday night when the Melbourne Storm host the Titans (7.30 NZT) and the Cowboys meet Wests Tigers in Townsville (9.30 NZT). Depending on the results in those matches, the contest between Newcastle and Parramatta on Sunday could also come into play in determining whether the Vodafone Warriors make the finals.


Its come down to the last round and, as weve seen, this competition throws up some amazing things, he said.


We need to worry about ourselves first and then lets just see what happens.


Jerome Ropati (hamstring) has been named on the right win and Dane Nielsen (ankle) in the centres with Elliott hopeful both will be fit to face the Dragons. Included on a six-man bench are Ngani Laumape and Sio Siua Taukeiaho.


VODAFONE WARRIORS v ST GEORGE ILLAWARRA DRAGONS


WIN Stadium, Wollongong

3.00pm, Saturday, September 07


VODAFONE WARRIORS


1KEVIN LOCKE

2JEROME ROPATI

3DANE NIELSEN

4KONRAD HURRELL

5MANU VATUVEI

6THOMAS LEULUAI

7SHAUN JOHNSON

8SAM RAPIRA

9NATHAN FRIEND

10SUAIA MATAGI

11ELIJAH TAYLOR

12SIMON MANNERING (c)

13TODD LOWRIE

Interchange:

14BEN MATULINO

15JACOB LILLYMAN

16FELETI MATEO

17DOMINIQUE PEYROUX

18NGANI LAUMAPE

20SIO SIUA TAUKEIAHO


HEAD COACH: MATTHEW ELLIOTT