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SJ v DCE: All eyes on the halfbacks tonight

The One New Zealand Warriors will look to move one step closer to locking in a top four finish and effectively end Manly's finals chances when the two sides clash at Daniel Anderson Stadium tonight. 

Andrew Webster's side are four competition points from Penrith and Brisbane, who have a bye this week, with either a third or fourth place finish likely with three rounds remaining. 

The Sea Eagles are three points outside the top eight and must win every one of their remaining three games to give themselves a chance of a finals spot while hoping results go in their favour. 

After conceding a total of 40 points in their past two outings, the One New Zealand Warriors will want to tighten up their defence ahead of the finals and against a Sea Eagles side that likes to throw the ball around.

Shaun Johnson has had a remarkable season in the halves for the home side but a challenge against Daly Cherry-Evans will prove a big test.

Team news

One New Zealand Warriors: A change 24-hours before kick off sees Tom Ale replace Jazz Tevaga on the bench after the veteran forward picked up a hamstring injury at training. Fullback Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad (concussion) returns after missing last week's win over Wests Tigers. Hooker Wayde Egan (throat) has been named despite spending the weekend in hospital following a knock. Bunty Afoa comes into the front row in place of Mitch Barnett who needed stitches for a laceration below the knee following the Wests Tigers game.

Sea Eagles: With Brad Parker and Ben Trbojevic sitting out a week under the concussion protocols, Morgan Harper comes into the centres and Kelma Tuilagi starts in the back row. Jake Arthur is the new face on the bench. No changes in Thursday's 24-hour update.

Rd 21 Highlights 2005: Warriors v Sea Eagles

Stat attack

  • The One New Zealand Warriors are aiming for six consecutive wins for the first time since 2002 when they won eight on the bounce between round seven and round 14.
  • The Sea Eagles have won their past three games against the Warriors.
  • Warriors winger Dallin Watene-Zelezniak has scored 16 tries in his past 11 games.
  • Manly fullback Reuben Garrick has scored 38 points in his past two games against the Warriors.
  • The Sea Eagles have won 11 out of 15 games against the Warriors in Auckland.
  • Warriors halfback Shaun Johnson has come up with a career-high 24 try assists this season. His previous best for try assists in a season was 23 at Cronulla in 2020.

Stats supplied by David Middleton, League Information Services, author of the official annual of the NRL.

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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