Taine Tuaupiki returns at fullback in a One New Zealand Warriors side showing a number of changes for Sunday’s eighth-round New South Wales Cup clash against Parramatta at North Harbour Stadium (12.00pm kick-off).
After being on the NRL side’s bench for the last two weeks, Tuaupiki is set to have his first outing in the New South Wales Cup since the fifth-round encounter with Western Suburbs.
Second rower Jacob Laban (eye) and winger Setu Tu (shoulder) are both side-lined after leaving the field in last week’s 40-30 win over the Sea Eagles.
Laban lasted only six minutes while Tu was forced off in the opening minutes of the second half.
Laban, who has just turned 19, has been replaced by 17-year-old Leka Halasima. The SG Ball Cup player has been named to make his first NSW Cup start after playing 52 minutes off the bench against the Sea Eagles on Sunday when he made 86 metres from eight runs plus 21 tackles.
Moala Graham-Taufa returns to start on the wing for Tu.
As well as Tuaupiki three others players from the fulltime NRL squad have been named - centre Viliami Vailea, halfback Ronald Volkman and back rower Demitric Sifakula while front rower James Gavet and Patrick Vaivai plus Graham-Taufa have all played in the NRL.
The One New Zealand Warriors, second on the table with a 5-2 record, face the eighth-placed Eels. They’ve had three wins, a draw and three losses.
Despite being further down the table, the Eels can call on a heavy dose of NRL experience not least from veteran Jordan Rankin in the halves. They also have former Kiwi World Nines and Māori All Stars winger Bailey Simonsson plus three former Warriors in Daejarn Asi, Jack Murchie and Ofahiki Ogden. LOther NRL players include halfback Jake Arthur, centres Zac Cini and Isaac Lumelume and middle forward Ky Rodwell.
Match: Warriors v Eels
Round 8 -
Fullback for Warriors is number 1 Taine TuaupikiFullback for Eels is number 3 Isaac Lumelume
Winger for Warriors is number 2 Moala Graham-TaufaWinger for Eels is number 2 Joshuah Minhinnick
Centre for Warriors is number 3 Viliami VaileaCentre for Eels is number 4 Zac Cini
Centre for Warriors is number 4 Ali LeiatauaCentre for Eels is number 20 Samuel Loizou
Winger for Warriors is number 5 Sanele AukusitinoWinger for Eels is number 23 Matthew Komolafe
Five-Eighth for Warriors is number 6 Ben FarrFive-Eighth for Eels is number 1 Daejarn Asi
Halfback for Warriors is number 7 Ronald VolkmanHalfback for Eels is number 7 Jake Arthur
Prop for Warriors is number 8 Zyon Maiu'uProp for Eels is number 8 Ofahiki Ogden
Hooker for Warriors is number 9 Paul RoacheHooker for Eels is number 9 Jayden Yates
Prop for Warriors is number 10 James GavetProp for Eels is number 10 Makahesi Makatoa
2nd Row for Warriors is number 11 Kalani Going2nd Row for Eels is number 11 Dan Keir
2nd Row for Warriors is number 12 Selumiela Halasima2nd Row for Eels is number 12 Jack Murchie
Lock for Warriors is number 13 Demitric SifakulaLock for Eels is number 17 Ky Rodwell
Interchange for Warriors is number 14 Eiden AcklandInterchange for Eels is number 14 Meni Luke
Interchange for Warriors is number 15 Isaiah VaganaInterchange for Eels is number 15 Toni Mataele
Interchange for Warriors is number 16 Paterika VaivaiInterchange for Eels is number 16 Jontay-Junior Betham-Misa
Interchange for Warriors is number 18 Nicholas HalaliloInterchange for Eels is number 19 Jirah Momoisea
Replacement for Warriors is number 17 Maia SandsReplacement for Eels is number 13 Luca Moretti