NYC TEAM NEWS | Line-up shuffled
Vodafone Junior Warrios coach Kelvin Wright has made a change in the centres and two on the bench for today’s fifth-round NYC game against the Melbourne Storm at AAMI Park (2.45pm kick-off local time; 4.45pm NZT).
With Marata Niukore called up to make his first appearance for the club’s New South Wales Cup side yesterday, Levi McBirney starts in the centres.
McBirney, who played First XV rugby union with Westlake Boys’ High School, made his NYC debut on the wing last weekend, scoring a try in the 40-14 win over Brisbane.
He’ll line up on the left edge today.
The rest of the starting line-up is unchanged but Wright has juggled his interchange.
Of the original selection hooker Sheldon Pitama and prop Amoni Tufui remain while Roman Tuhimata and Joseph Price make way for front rower Paul Tuli and back rower Mattais Heimuli.
Tuli played in the opening match of the season but missed the last three while Heimuli’s only previous NYC appearance was his debut against the Raiders in Canberra last season.
The Vodafone Junior Warriors have won their last four matches on end to lie fourth on the table; victory today would take them to second pending the outcome of the encounter between Penrith and North Queensland.
Melbourne is 10th with two wins and two losses.
MELBOURNE STORM v VODAFONE JUNIOR WARRIORS
AAMI Park, Melbourne
2.45pm, Monday, April 06
Referee: Michael Gordon
VODAFONE JUNIOR WARRIORS
1 BRAD ABBEY
2 TOMAS AOAKE
3 SEMISI TYRELL
18 LEVI McBIRNEY
5 PAUL ULBERG
6 ATA HINGANO
7 ERIN CLARK
8 BUNTY AFOA
9 NATHANIEL ROACHE
10 TOAFOFOA SIPLEY (c)
11 OFAHIKI OGDEN
12 MATIU LOVE-HENRY
13 JAZZ TEVAGA
14 SHELDON PITAMA
16 AMONI TUFUI
20 PAUL TULI
22 MATTAIS HEIMULI
COACH: KELVIN WRIGHT