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'Wife happy we lost': RTS, Warriors counting days to homecoming

The Warriors' inspiring run towards the finals ended on Sunday but for Roger Tuivasa-Sheck, his partner Ashley Walker, and their two children, a pending five-month reunion can't come quick enough.

Interim coach Todd Payten declared the Warriors players and coaching staff were counting down the days before they can travel home to New Zealand after relocating to Australia in May to help keep the season alive.

For captain Tuivasa-Sheck, in particular, the time away from his family has been made extremely difficult with his children, all under the age of three, remaining in Auckland over the past four months.

"I was talking to Roger today and asked him how the family was going and he said his wife was happy that we lost," Payten said on Wednesday.

"I'm sure he's not the only one. We've got 14 days to go. We haven't reflected yet, the boys are disappointed. The review on Monday was a little quiet but we've got our heads around it now.

"We've spoken about the next couple of weeks and what's required.

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"My main message after the game was we've built some credibility up over the past eight weeks and we need to perform well for that to not go out the window. I'm sure they're counting them down."

Tuivasa-Sheck will remain with the side for the final two games despite the fact they can no longer make the finals.

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bet they missing the fun parent #isolationfun @__jeswalker @_danz183

A post shared by Roger Tuivasa-Sheck (@tuivasasheck) on

The Warriors said farewell to Parramatta loan duo Daniel Alvaro and George Jennings earlier in the week, while Tuivasa-Sheck (leg), Kodi Nikorima (arm) and Peta Hiku (head knock) were limited on Wednesday.

"[Training this week] is a little different purely because we didn't have the numbers to do our team stuff," Payten said.

"We had a couple of guys in the rehab group with lower leg problems and they weren't able to train at full capacity.

"We tried to play a few games to lighten the mood and lift the spirits."

The Warriors face a Raiders side chasing a top-four spot to finish the regular season, but the underdogs hold a recent 3-2 record against the Green Machine.

"We know what we're walking into on Sunday, we're playing a really good team who play direct and challenge us at the ruck," Payten said.

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"That's not the only challenge we'll face. We have a 7.30 am bus departure to Sydney and then a flight to Canberra.

"We get to the ground around 11 o'clock and if we don't attack that part of the day with the right mentality then it will make for a really tough day once the whistle blows."

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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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