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Warriors forward Isaiah Papali'i

After being at the centre of a controversial call which led to a last-minute Anzac Day loss to Melbourne, Warriors forward Isaiah Papali'i has a score to settle when he faces them again on Saturday.

With the Warriors on the verge of an upset victory, Papali'i gave away a penalty which allowed the Storm to tie the game at 12-12.

Brodie Croft drove a dagger through their hearts on the very next set with a game-winning field goal.

NRL head of football Graham Annesley later admitted referee Matt Cecchin should never have penalised Papali'i, but the apology appears to have done little to dampen the 20-year-old's desire to make amends against the competition leaders this weekend in Auckland.

"It's a big game this Saturday, especially after I gave away the penalty for them to get the two points [to tie the game] last time," Papali'i told

"It was a back and forth contest for 75 minutes and then to give away a penalty like that, it was pretty heartbreaking.

Match Highlights: Storm v Warriors

"The boys were pretty reassuring after the game because they knew it was a 50-50 call.

"I couldn't do much about it … hopefully it's [Melbourne] who get pinged this time in the crucial moment."

That round seven loss was the Warriors' seventh straight to Melbourne stretching back to 2015.

The Warriors are also without a win in their last three games at Mount Smart Stadium.

Try of the week: Round 12

Papali'i said the recent experience of playing Melbourne presented his side with a potential advantage this week.

"Knowing how they defend, they are pretty aggressive and it's about just not getting flustered by it, and knowing there are weak points to their line and trying to exploit those," he said.

"It's just being smart about it. Knowing you are going to have to take your medicine with them, but that there are ways to manipulate their line.

"Simple footy, running hard and tackling hard, that's what kept us in the game last time."

Warriors winger David Fusitu'a said he is relishing the prospect of coming up against a State of Origin winger for the second game in a row.

Fusitu'a is set to line up opposite NSW flyer Josh Addo-Carr three days after Origin I, having taken on Queensland powerhouse Corey Oates a fortnight ago in an 8-2 loss to Brisbane.

Tackle of the week: Round 12

Fusitu'a has scored six tries in his last seven appearances against Melbourne and views Addo-Carr as one of his toughest opponents.  

"Josh is a quality winger and it's going to be just like matching up against Corey Oates in my last game," Fusitu'a told

"They are both great players and it's good to test myself against those types of quality wingers.

"I'm looking forward to it and to putting my best foot forward against them. Melbourne have been the pinnacle of our comp for a long time."

Acknowledgement of Country

The New Zealand Warriors honour the mana of the Indigenous peoples of Aotearoa, Australia and the Pacific. We acknowledge the traditional kaitiaki of the lands, elders past and present, their stories, their traditions, their mamae and their mana motuhake.

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