Prop Bunty Afoa returns for the Vodafone Junior Warriors' NYC clash against the Bulldogs. Image | www.photosport.co.nz

Standoff Ma’afoaeata Hingano will become one of the NYC’s youngest players when he makes his debut for the Vodafone Junior Warriors in their fifth-round encounter with the Cronulla Sharks at Remondis Stadium on Saturday (2.40pm kick-off local time; 4.40pm NZT).

 

He’s only just 17, having celebrated his birthday on March 11.

 

A Pakuranga College product and Papakura Jaguars junior, Hingano – usually called Ata – will team up with the experienced Mason Lino in the halves.

 

In another backline change, George Edwards will start in the centres while coach Stacey Jones has been forced to make some changes to the pack as well.

 

With regular front rower James Taylor injured, Kouma Samson moves from the back row to prop and former Leeds Rhinos junior comes into the second row.

 

Coming into the squad for the first time this season is prop Katamiro Atera. Named on the bench, he made five appearances last season.

 

VODAFONE JUNIOR WARRIORS v CRONULLA SHARKS

Remondis Stadium, Cronulla

10.40pm, Saturday, April 5

 

 

VODAFONE JUNIOR WARRIORS

 

1 BRAD ABBEY

2 METIA LISATI

3 GEORGE EDWARDS

4 KEN MAUMALO

5 BRAXTON STANLEY

6 MA’AFOAEATA HINGANO

7 MASON LINO (c)

8 IULIO AFOA

9 KURT ROBINSON

10 KOUMA SAMSON

11 MICHAEL KI

12 MASON TONKS

13 ADAM TUIMAVAVE-GERRARD

Interchange:

14 OFAHIKI OGDEN

15 JORDAN BALDWINSON

16 JAZZ TEVAGA

17 KATAMIRO ATERA

18 NATHANIEL ROACHE

 

COACH: STACEY JONES