Vodafone Warriors hooker Siliva Havili had a heavy defensive workload against the Mounties finishing the match with 44 tackles. Image | www.photosport.co.nz

Five starting line-up changes have been signalled for the Vodafone Warriors’ 22nd-round New South Wales Cup clash against the fourth-placed Wests Tigers in Sydney on Saturday (3.00pm kick-off local time; 5.00pm NZT).

Solomone Kata and David Fusitu’a have both been named to return from injury on the wings with Carlos Tuimavave back at standoff after being on bereavement leave.

There are also changes in the second row with Abraham Papalii and Michael Sio named to replace Jayson Bukuya – back in the NRL squad – and Upu Poching, who is on the bench.

The Vodafone Warriors slipped a spot to sixth on the ladder following their 4-42 loss to the Mounties last weekend. As it happened, had they won they would have been sitting second.

The table could scarcely be more congested, aside from Penrith which is way out in front on 36 points.

The fun starts then with Illawarra, the Mounties, Wests Tigers and Wentworthville all on 28, the Vodafone Warriors on 27 and then Cronulla and Newcastle on 26.

To revive their push for a top four spot the Vodafone Warriors have to rebound against the Tigers this week. To do so they must lift after their heaviest loss of the season last weekend.

By the end of a disappointing contest the Vodafone Warriors could find little in the way of redeeming features other than the admirable defensive workloads carried by a number of players, notably David Bhana with 47 tackles (just one missed tackle), Siliva Havili with 44, Bukuya 36, John Palavi 33 and Charlie-Paul Gubb 30.

 

VODAFONE WARRIORS v WESTS TIGERS

Kirkham Park, Sydney

3.00pm, Saturday, August 09

 

VODAFONE WARRIORS

1 STEVE WAETFORD (c)

2 SOLOMONE KATA

3 KEN MAUMALO

4 DOMINIQUE PEYROUX

5 DAVID FUSITU’A

6 CARLOS TUIMAVAVE

7 SAM COOK

8 AGNATIUS PAASI

9 SILIVA HAVILI

10 CHARLIE-PAUL GUBB

11 MICHAEL SIO

12 ABRAHAM PAPALII

13 JOHN PALAVI

Interchange:

14 DAVID BHANA

15 UPU POCHING

16 JARROD TUA

17 SAM LISONE

18 RAYMOND FAITALA-MARINER

COACH: ROHAN SMITH

VODAFONE WARRIORS v SHARKS
4pm, Sunday 10 August