Vodafone Warriors head coach Nathan Brown has brought Adam Pompey into the centres to replace the injured Euan Aitken for Friday night’s second-round NRL encounter with the Newcastle Knights at Central Coast Stadium in Gosford (6.00pm kick-off local time; 8.00pm NZT).
The 22-year-old Pompey’s inclusion is the only change to the line-up used in last Saturday’s season-opening 19-6 home win over Gold Coast.
After impressing in 13 outings last season, Pompey will team up on the left edge inside experienced winger Ken Maumalo.
Aitken is set to have surgery after a high ankle sprain in his left leg during his debut for the club. It’s expected he will be side-lined for 8-10 weeks.
“It’s disappointing for Euan and for us as a team but we’ve got a very capable replacement in Adam,” said Brown
We’ve got a very capable replacement for Euan in AdamNathan Brown Vodafone Warriors head coach
“He was outstanding at the back end of last season and he has trialled very well for us against the Titans and Redcliffe in the lead-up to this season.”
Pompey split his appearances between the centres and the wing last year. In taking his career tally to 18 games, he scored five tries and averaged 108 metres a match. He’s also a goal-kicking option.
Match: Warriors v Knights
Round 2 -
Fullback for Warriors is number 1 Roger Tuivasa-SheckFullback for Knights is number 1 Tex Hoy
Winger for Warriors is number 2 David Fusitu'aWinger for Knights is number 2 Starford To'a
Centre for Warriors is number 3 Adam PompeyCentre for Knights is number 3 Enari Tuala
Centre for Warriors is number 4 Peta HikuCentre for Knights is number 4 Bradman Best
Winger for Warriors is number 5 Ken MaumaloWinger for Knights is number 5 Hymel Hunt
Five-Eighth for Warriors is number 6 Kodi NikorimaFive-Eighth for Knights is number 18 Phoenix Crossland
Halfback for Warriors is number 7 Chanel Harris-TavitaHalfback for Knights is number 7 Mitchell Pearce
Prop for Warriors is number 8 Addin Fonua-BlakeProp for Knights is number 8 David Klemmer
Hooker for Warriors is number 9 Wayde EganHooker for Knights is number 9 Jayden Brailey
Prop for Warriors is number 10 Jamayne Taunoa-BrownProp for Knights is number 10 Daniel Saifiti
2nd Row for Warriors is number 11 Eliesa Katoa2nd Row for Knights is number 11 Tyson Frizell
2nd Row for Warriors is number 12 Bayley Sironen2nd Row for Knights is number 12 Mitchell Barnett
Lock for Warriors is number 13 Tohu HarrisLock for Knights is number 14 Sauaso Sue
Interchange for Warriors is number 14 Jazz TevagaInterchange for Knights is number 13 Connor Watson
Interchange for Warriors is number 15 Ben Murdoch-MasilaInterchange for Knights is number 15 Jacob Saifiti
Interchange for Warriors is number 16 Leeson Ah MauInterchange for Knights is number 16 Josh King
Interchange for Warriors is number 17 Bunty AfoaInterchange for Knights is number 17 Brodie Jones
- Referee: Grant Atkins
- Touch Judge: Matt Noyen
- Touch Judge: Jon Stone
- Senior Review Official: Alan Shortall
He was named in jersey #18 in the extended squad last week; that spot has been filled by new signing Marcelo Montoya.
There’s one other change in the 21-man squad which sees second rower Jack Murchie named in jersey #22 replacing Josh Curran.
Hooker Wayde Egan and second rower Bayley Sironen have been named but face further tests under the head injury protocols.
New recruit Addin Fonua-Blake, who topped 200 metres in his club debut, will play his 99th career match while Maumalo will move to 97 appearances and Roger Tuivasa-Sheck will edge his tally for the club to 96.
Friday night’s second consecutive home game in Gosford will provide a stern test for the Vodafone Warriors who face a buoyant Newcastle side coming off a 32-16 round one success against Canterbury Bankstown.
They also impressed up front with their big pack led by Daniel Saifiti, David Klemmer, new acquisition Tyson Frizzell and Mitch Barnett. They all made more than 170 metres each.
Last week’s win was just the 10th time in 27 attempts that the Vodafone Warriors have opened a season with a victory. They have won the first two games of a season only three times.
In 43 contests between the two sides, the Vodafone Warriors have a 22-20 edge with one match drawn. In their most recent meeting the Vodafone Warriors had their best win on the season, beating the Knights 36-6 in Tamworth last August.
VODAFONE WARRIORS v NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS
6.00pm, Friday, March 19, 2021
Central Coast Stadium, Gosford
Referee: Grant Atkins
1 ROGER TUIVASA-SHECK (c)
2 DAVID FUSITU’A
3 ADAM POMPEY
4 PETA HIKU
5 KEN MAUMALO
6 KODI NIKORIMA
7 CHANEL HARRIS-TAVITA
8 ADDIN FONUA-BLAKE
9 WAYDE EGAN
10 JAMAYNE TAUNOA-BROWN
11 ELIESA KATOA
12 BAYLEY SIRONEN
13 TOHU HARRIS
14 JAZZ TEVAGA
15 BEN MURDOCH-MASILA
16 LEESON AH MAU
17 BUNTY AFOA
18 MARCELLO MONTOYA
20 SEAN O’SULLIVAN
21 TOM ALE
22 JACK MURCHIE
HEAD COACH | NATHAN BROWN