You have skipped the navigation, tab for page content

The Warriors have asked the NRL to reconsider not allowing them to bring in an experienced forward due to the extensive injury list confronting them.

With prop Leeson Ah Mau (pectoral muscle) and lock Jazz Tevaga (knee) sustaining long-term injuries while the Warriors are in isolation camp at Tamworth, CEO Cameron George wants a player loaned to the club.

The pair are now added to the club's casualty ward, which already includes hooker Jackson Frei and prop Bunty Afoa (season-ending knee injuries).

"We've sort of run out of stocks," George said on Monday in relation to his middle forwards.

He said a number of other NRL clubs had offered to loan the Warriors a player, even for a short period of time.

Warriors denied loan request

"We've been declined already from the NRL for loan players. So were going to have a second discussion with them," George said.

"We've got significant injuries in one particular part of our squad, in key positions. So to simply say 'You've still got 28 players', well they all can't play front row.

"So we need to go back to the drawing table with the NRL and give them a very clear understanding of who we have and what we don't have available, particularly in the middle."

A NRL spokesman on Monday said that player loans were "against the rules of the competition".

With four forwards out – and the current restrictions on travel, alongside the cancellation of lower grade football – George said the club believed it had good grounds for compensation.

Fusitu'a quarantined alone in Australia

"Development players are not necessarily NRL-ready. We have a duty of care as does every other NRL club," he said.

"You don't have too many front-rowers in your development list. Usually, they are in your top-30 and firing or you bring them in from the outside because they've developed elsewhere.

"We haven't got any sitting there ready to rumble. That's the challenge for us.

"We've been contacted by a couple of other NRL clubs who have offered to help us out, which is absolutely brilliant," George said.

"For us, a loan might just be for a month to get us through this tough month while Jazz is out and other kids are finding their feet.

"And our development players aren’t getting that experience playing Canterbury Cup or another grade. So we're in a really challenging spot."

George also revealed Tevaga's knee might not be as bad as the club initially thought. But he's still likely to miss three or four rounds.

Development players are not necessarily NRL-ready

Warriors CEO Cameron George

Another concern for the Warriors was acting NRL chief executive Andrew Abdo's comments last Friday – following the NRL draw for rounds three and four – that the NRLW competition remained a priority for the code.

Earlier this year George side the Warriors' NRLW side and some junior teams might have to be axed as the club's finances couldn't stretch that far in the financially challenging COVID-19 times.

"I don't know what the NRL's plan is about that, so to say that and not fire through with the clubs is a bit challenging," George said.

"We won't be – unless we get funding – it [NRLW] is certainly in jeopardy from our perspective."

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.

Principal Partner

Major Partners

Official Sponsors

View All Partners