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Harris back for first game in charge after 300-day absence

Captain Tohu Harris will play his long-awaited first match of the season while winger Marcelo Montoya is back from suspension for the Vodafone Warriors’ Magic Round encounter with the South Sydney Rabbitohs at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane on Saturday (3.00pm kick-off local time; 5.00pm NZT).

Harris has been named in the second row for a match which won’t just be his first in 300 days but also his first as captain since being officially appointed last December.

The 30-year-old Harris hasn’t played since rupturing the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in his right knee in the round 18 encounter with Penrith at Suncorp Stadium on July 18 last year.

Montoya (26) has been immediately reinstated on the left wing after serving his four-match suspension on a contrary conduct offence which ruled him out of the games against the Sydney Roosters, Melbourne, Canberra and Cronulla Sutherland.

The consistent Montoya had contributed impressively to the club’s run of three straight wins before his suspension; now he’s back in his accustomed spot replacing Adam Pompey who has been moved into the centres.

While having both Harris and Montoya in the side gives the Vodafone Warriors a significant lift after Sunday’s disappointing loss to a 12-man Sharks side, the good news is offset by the loss of back rower Bayley Sironen while Euan Aitken, named in the second row, has to pass HIA protocols after leaving the field on Saturday with concussion.

The line-up which lost 10-29 to the Sharks remains largely intact with Harris’ inclusion the only change in the starting pack named while Shaun Johnson, Daejarn Asi, Viliami Vailea, Dallin Watene-Zelezniak, Reece Walsh and Pompey are again in the backline, albeit with Pompey moved into the centres.

Team Lists

Backs

  • Fullback for Warriors is number 1 Reece Walsh
    Fullback for Rabbitohs is number 1 Blake Taaffe
  • Winger for Warriors is number 2 Dallin Watene-Zelezniak
    Winger for Rabbitohs is number 2 Alex Johnston
  • Centre for Warriors is number 3 Viliami Vailea
    Centre for Rabbitohs is number 3 Jaxson Paulo
  • Centre for Warriors is number 4 Adam Pompey
    Centre for Rabbitohs is number 4 Campbell Graham
  • Winger for Warriors is number 5 Marcelo Montoya
    Winger for Rabbitohs is number 5 Taane Milne
  • Five-Eighth for Warriors is number 6 Daejarn Asi
    Five-Eighth for Rabbitohs is number 6 Cody Walker
  • Halfback for Warriors is number 7 Shaun Johnson
    Halfback for Rabbitohs is number 7 Lachlan Ilias

Forwards

  • Prop for Warriors is number 8 Addin Fonua-Blake
    Prop for Rabbitohs is number 8 Tevita Tatola
  • Hooker for Warriors is number 13 Jazz Tevaga
    Hooker for Rabbitohs is number 9 Damien Cook
  • Prop for Warriors is number 10 Matthew Lodge
    Prop for Rabbitohs is number 10 Thomas Burgess
  • 2nd Row for Warriors is number 17 Jack Murchie
    2nd Row for Rabbitohs is number 11 Keaon Koloamatangi
  • 2nd Row for Warriors is number 18 Eliesa Katoa
    2nd Row for Rabbitohs is number 12 Jacob Host
  • Lock for Warriors is number 14 Aaron Pene
    Lock for Rabbitohs is number 13 Jai Arrow

Interchange

  • Interchange for Warriors is number 12 Tohu Harris
    Interchange for Rabbitohs is number 14 Kodi Nikorima
  • Interchange for Warriors is number 15 Ben Murdoch-Masila
    Interchange for Rabbitohs is number 15 Davvy Moale
  • Interchange for Warriors is number 16 Bunty Afoa
    Interchange for Rabbitohs is number 16 Siliva Havili
  • Interchange for Warriors is number 25 Freddy Lussick
    Interchange for Rabbitohs is number 17 Liam Knight

Reserves

  • Replacement for Warriors is number 22 Edward Kosi
    Replacement for Rabbitohs is number 18 Peter Mamouzelos

Match Officials

  • Referee: Ben Cummins
  • Touch Judge: Darian Furner
  • Senior Review Official: Gerard Sutton

Last updated:

Included on the extended bench are new signings halfback Ronald Volkman and hooker Freddy Lussick, who linked up with the club from the Roosters on Monday.

The match takes on special significance for Jazz Tevaga, who’ll make his 99th appearance since his debut in 2016.

Both sides will be equally desperate for the third match of this weekend’s Magic Round.

Playing as the home side at a sold-out Suncorp Stadium, the Vodafone Warriors climbed a spot to 10th on the ladder despite Sunday’s defeat by the Sharks and sit two points behind eighth-placed Brisbane.

The scenario is similar to what they encountered when hosting Canberra on April when both sides were hunting a bounce back victory.

This time Rabbitohs are in the same predicament coming off a 12-30 loss to the Broncos last Thursday which sees them in ninth spot with same 4-5 record as the Vodafone Warriors.

VODAFONE WARRIORS v SOUTH SYDNEY RABBITOHS

Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane

3.00pm, Saturday, May 14

 

VODAFONE WARRIORS

1 REECE WALSH

2 DALLIN WATENE-ZELEZNIAK

3 VILIAMI VAILEA

4 ADAM POMPEY

5 MARCELO MONTOYA

6 DAEJARN ASI

7 SHAUN JOHNSON

8 ADDIN FONUA-BLAKE

9 WAYDE EGAN

10 MATT LODGE

11 EUAN AITKEN

12 TOHU HARRIS (c)

13 JAZZ TEVAGA

Extended bench:

14 AARON PENE

15 BEN MURDOCH-MASILA

16 BUNTY AFOA

17 JACK MURCHIE

18 ELIESA KATOA

20 ROCCO BERRY

21 PRIDE PETTERSON-ROBATI

22 EDWARD KOSI

23 JUNIOR RATUVA

24 RONALD VOLKMAN

25 FREDDY LUSSICK

Head coach | Nathan BROWN