Another top four match-up awaits the Vodafone Warriors when they host the in-form South Sydney Rabbitohs in their 12th-round NRL encounter at Mount Smart Stadium on Saturday (7.30pm kick-off; match day sponsor: SKYCITY).
The Vodafone Warriors have been inside the top three on the ladder after each of the competition’s first 11 rounds of the season, six weeks in second spot and five weeks in third.
After finishing over the top of Parramatta to win 24-14 on Friday night, the third-placed Vodafone Warriors are up against the South Sydney Rabbitohs, who have surged into fourth spot on the back of three consecutive wins, including a last-gasp 20-19 victory over the North Queensland Cowboys on Saturday night.
It was against the Rabbitohs that the Vodafone Warriors ignited their impressive 2018 campaign with their historic first win in 10 attempts in Perth dating back to 1996. The dazzling 32-20 success launched a record run of five straight wins to open the season before their first loss.
While the Vodafone Warriors enter the halfway point of the 24-match programme with an 8-3 win-loss sequence, the Rabbitohs have recovered from their Perth setback to sit just behind on 14 points with a 7-4 record.
This Saturday night will mark the third time in the opening 12 rounds that the Vodafone Warriors have been involved in a contest against opponents who were in the top four at the time; they won on the first two occasions.
TheVodafone Warriors were lying second and the Sydney Roosters third when they blasted their way to a 30-6 win at Allianz Stadium in the fourth round. In round seven, the Vodafone Warriors were second again when they came back outstandingly to beat the top-ranked St George Illawarra 20-12 at Mount Smart Stadium.
The Vodafone Warriors’ start to the season is the second best in the club's history, bettered only by the 2002 side which won 13 of its first 15 matches en route to claiming the minor premiership.