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Chanel Harris-Tavita is reunited in the halves with Shaun Johnson and 100-game man Jazz Tevaga will start at prop when the Vodafone Warriors face the Newcastle Knights in Saturday’s Indigenous Round clash at Moreton Daily Stadium (3.00pm kick-off local time; 5.00pm NZT).

The 23-year-old Harris-Tavita has been out for a month since having a testicle ruptured in a friendly fire incident in the Anzac Day loss to Melbourne.

Close to returning last week against St George Illawarra, he has now been cleared to rejoin Johnson in the halves for just the fifth time this season.

They were paired together in the home wins over Brisbane and North Queensland followed by the away defeats by the Sydney Roosters and the Storm.

A new-look starting front row has been selected in the wake of the Vodafone Warriors losing both of their first-choice props Addin Fonua-Blake and Matt Lodge; Fonua-Blake has a foot injury which could keep him out long-term while Lodge was released last Friday.

Team Lists

Backs

  • Fullback for Warriors is number 1 Reece Walsh
    Fullback for Knights is number 1 Kalyn Ponga
  • Winger for Warriors is number 2 Dallin Watene-Zelezniak
    Winger for Knights is number 2 Edrick Lee
  • Centre for Warriors is number 3 Viliami Vailea
    Centre for Knights is number 3 Dane Gagai
  • Centre for Warriors is number 4 Adam Pompey
    Centre for Knights is number 4 Enari Tuala
  • Winger for Warriors is number 5 Marcelo Montoya
    Winger for Knights is number 5 Dominic Young
  • Five-Eighth for Warriors is number 6 Chanel Harris-Tavita
    Five-Eighth for Knights is number 6 Anthony Milford
  • Halfback for Warriors is number 7 Shaun Johnson
    Halfback for Knights is number 7 Jake Clifford

Forwards

  • Prop for Warriors is number 8 Ben Murdoch-Masila
    Prop for Knights is number 8 David Klemmer
  • Hooker for Warriors is number 9 Freddy Lussick
    Hooker for Knights is number 9 Chris Randall
  • Prop for Warriors is number 10 Jazz Tevaga
    Prop for Knights is number 10 Daniel Saifiti
  • 2nd Row for Warriors is number 11 Euan Aitken
    2nd Row for Knights is number 11 Tyson Frizell
  • 2nd Row for Warriors is number 13 Jack Murchie
    2nd Row for Knights is number 12 Lachlan Fitzgibbon
  • Lock for Warriors is number 12 Tohu Harris
    Lock for Knights is number 13 Mitchell Barnett

Interchange

  • Interchange for Warriors is number 14 Taniela Otukolo
    Interchange for Knights is number 14 Phoenix Crossland
  • Interchange for Warriors is number 15 Aaron Pene
    Interchange for Knights is number 15 Jacob Saifiti
  • Interchange for Warriors is number 16 Bunty Afoa
    Interchange for Knights is number 17 Mat Croker
  • Interchange for Warriors is number 21 Dunamis Lui
    Interchange for Knights is number 18 Simi Sasagi

Reserves

  • Replacement for Warriors is number 17 Eliesa Katoa
    Replacement for Knights is number 16 Leo Thompson

Match Officials

  • Referee: Peter Gough
  • Touch Judge: Nick Morel
  • Senior Review Official: Gerard Sutton

Last updated:

After bringing up his 100th appearance for the club last Saturday, the ever-reliable Tevaga has been called on as a starting prop along with Ben Murdoch-Masila while recent signing Freddy Lussick is named at hooker after his solid interchange outings against the South Sydney Rabbitohs and the Dragons.

Former Queensland Origin prop Lui is included on the extended bench after being signed just yesterday for the rest of the season.

Captaining feeder club Redcliffe in the Queensland Cup, the 32-year-old brings extensive experience to the Vodafone Warriors after a total of 169 appearances for Brisbane, Manly Warringah, St George Illawarra and Canberra. He was in the losing Raiders side in the 2019 grand final against the Roosters.

While Harris-Tavita and Arthars make their comebacks, hooker Wayde Egan (calf) and back rowers Josh Curran (knee) and Bayley Sironen (osteitis pubis) remain on the injury list ahead of anticipated returns next week.

The Vodafone Warriors and Newcastle are equally desperate for success this week.

Since winning three matches on end, the Vodafone Warriors have had just one victory in their last seven matches while the Knights have only one win in their last nine games.

VODAFONE WARRIORS v NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS

Moreton Daily Stadium, Redcliffe

3.00pm, Saturday, May 28

VODAFONE WARRIORS

1 REECE WALSH

2 DALLIN WATENE-ZELEZNIAK

3 VILIAMI VAILEA

4 ADAM POMPEY

5 MARCELO MONTOYA

6 CHANEL HARRIS-TAVITA

7 SHAUN JOHNSON

8 BEN MURDOCH-MASILA

9 FREDDY LUSSICK

10 JAZZ TEVAGA

11 EUAN AITKEN

12 TOHU HARRIS (c)

13 JACK MURCHIE

Extended bench:

14 TANIELA OTUKOLO

15 AARON PENE

15 BEN MURDOCH-MASILA

16 BUNTY AFOA

17 ELIESA KATOA

18 JESSE ARTHARS

20 ROCCO BERRY

21 DUNAMIS LUI

22 DAEJARN ASI

23 PRIDE PETTERSON-ROBATI

24 RONALD VOLKMAN

25 JACKSON FREI

Head coach | Nathan BROWN

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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