Vodafone Warriors v Knights

Date: Sunday, March 5, 2016

Venue: Mount Smart Stadium, Auckland

Game Day Hashtag: #NRLWarriorsKnights

 

Key timings

11.30am | Gates open 

11.45am | NYC kick-off - Vodafone Warriors v Newcastle Knights

1.45pm | ISP kick-off - Vodafone Warriors v Newcastle Knights

4.00pm | NRL kick-off - Vodafone Warriors v Newcastle Knights

 

All three Vodafone Warriors teams will be in action against Newcastle on Sunday as the club celebrates its first season-opener at Mount Smart Stadium since 2009 (game day sponsor: Vodafone; charity of the day: KidsCan).

Indeed, the Vodafone Warriors begin their 23rd campaign with back-to-back home games following up this week’s visit by the Knights with another classic confrontation against traditional rival Melbourne at Mount Smart on Friday, March 17.

But right now the focus is solely on the first of 11 home games in Auckland taking on the Knights, just the second time they’ve been hosted at Mount Smart in the opening round of the season. The first was in 2003 when the great Andrew Johns was in his pomp, guiding the Knights to a 36-26 win in front of a crowd of 16,291.

Apart from the three matches, game day activities will be focused on a family fun day around the ground (gates open at 11.30am).

There’ll be plenty features in the Harvey Norman Community Fun Zone. Members and fans can have their photos taken there between 3.00pm-4.00pm, there’ll be face painting and the passing wall will be in operation with prizes to be won.

Also on the schedule immediately after the Intrust Super Premiership game will be the Ray White Coin toss. It’ll be a first for new Vodafone Warriors captain Roger Tuivasa-Sheck when he joins his opposite Trent Hodkinson in the middle of the field. Tossing the coin will be Vodafone Warriors member #2580085 Jean Bidois, from Ngongotaha.

There will also be a sombre note on the day when a moment of silence is observed for former Vodafone Warriors owner Malcolm Boyle, who passed away early on Tuesday after a long battle with illness. Boyle, a long-time Vodafone Warriors member, was 66. His funeral will be held at St Matthew-in-the-City at 2.00pm tomorrow (Saturday).

Boyle was a passionate rugby league man.

Together with Graham Lowe, he bought the Vodafone Warriors in late 1998. Boyle played at premier level for Marist, Howick and Eastern United in the 1970s and early 1980s. After starting his journalism career with the now defunct Auckland Star, he moved into public relations roles with the Rothmans Sports Foundation and Air New Zealand before forming his own company Baldwin Boyle and setting up other PR agencies. He earned a reputation as one of New Zealand’s most highly-regarded PR practitioners.

The moment of silence is scheduled to be observed in the build-up to the main NRL feature between the Vodafone Warriors and Newcastle.

Features

Ray White Coin Toss: The Ray White Coin Toss will take place straight after the end of the ISP curtain-raiser (about 3.15pm). Vodafone Warriors member Jean Bidois tosses the coin with Vodafone Warriors captain Roger Tuivasa-Sheck and his Newcastle counterpart Trent Hodkinson. Jean Bidois has a photo taken with the captains.

Harvey Norman Community Fun Zone: Get your photo taken in the Harvey Norman Community Fun Zone with Vodafone Warriors players there between 3.00pm-4.00pm. There will be face painting and the passing wall will be in operation.

ACC Biggest Warm-Up: Mini and mod teams will be taken through their paces in the ACC Biggest Warm-Up before playing their games.

Canterbury of New Zealand T-Shirt Cannon: Players’ warm-up T-shirts and Canterbury of New Zealand T-shirts will be shot into the crowd from the Canterbury of New Zealand T-Shirt cannon. If you catch one of the warm-up T-shirts head down to the Members' Clubrooms after the game for your opportunity to meet the team.

SKYCITY 'Meet the Team': The first SKYCITY 'Meet The Team' event of the season will be held after Sunday's match. Head to Andy’s (Level 2, SKYCITY) after the game. The event starts at 7.00pm with the Vodafone Warriors players and football staff in attendance to mingle with members and fans. The player of the day award for the season opener will be presented. Kids are welcome at this family-friendly environment so bring along the whole family.