So, the Vodafone Warriors’ Mount Smart Stadium homecoming is now just a matter of hours and minutes away, the perfect time to mull over some fun facts and trivia.
Like the longest unbeaten run at Mount Smart Stadium in the club’s history.
Think about it. Going into Sunday’s clash against the Wests Tigers, the Vodafone Warriors will boast a run of not losing at their home ground in two years, 10 months and three days. Hard to see it ever being bettered.
The last game and the last loss at Mount Smart Stadium was against South Sydney on August 30, 2019.
- The crowd was 15,295, just a little more than half of what it will be this Sunday.
- Agnatius Paasi made his 100th NRL appearance.
- Adam Pompey scored his first NRL try.
- The club’s last try scorer at Mount Smart was Ken Maumalo.
- Issac Luke scored the last points at the ground, converting Maumalo’s try.
- The curtain raiser was Auckland's Fox Memorial grand final between the Howick Hornets and the Mount Albert Lions, the Hornets winning 22-18 in golden point extra time.
- The only players from the 2022 squad who appeared in the match were Adam Pompey, Jazz Tevaga and Chanel Harris-Tavita.
- Five players have since retired – Blake Green, Issac Luke, Leeson Ah Mau, Adam Blair and Lachlan Burr.
While August 30, 2019 was the last time the Vodafone Warriors played at Mount Smart Stadium it wasn’t their last game in New Zealand.
That was their preseason trial – coincidentally against the Wests Tigers – in Rotorua on Sunday, March 1, 2020, a game the Tigers won 20-6 while a week earlier the Vodafone Warriors lost 16-18 to Melbourne in Palmerston North.
Of this year’s squad only Shaun Johnson, Tohu Harris, Bunty Afoa, Josh Curran, Tevaga, Pompey and Harris-Tavita have made NRL appearance for the Vodafone Warriors at Mount Smart Stadium.
Wayde Egan’s 50 appearances for the club have all been made in Australia while Eliesa Katoa’s entire first-grade career – 40 games – has been played away from home.