Same again for Cowboys' clash

Published 3:49pm 16 August 2022

Same again for Cowboys' clash
Words by Nick Crockford

Vodafone Warriors interim head coach Stacey Jones pictured above, has named an unchanged line-up, but with Chanel Harris-Tavita on the bench, for Friday’s NRL 23 clash with the North Queensland Cowboys in Townsville (6pm AEST).

Harris-Tavita is back after missing just two matches following a minor MCL knee strain suffered in the round 20 loss to Melbourne in Auckland on July 29.

Jones reported Harris-Tavita was moving more freely this week leaving the possibility he could come into the playing line-up as a late change.

The utility is just three games away from stepping aside from the NRL at the age of only 23 to pursue other interests.

His recovery gives him the chance of a farewell appearance at Mount Smart Stadium when the Vodafone Warriors host Gold Coast in their last match of the season on September 3.

For now Jones is staying with the same combination from the 42-18 win over Canterbury Bankstown on Friday, making it two wins out of three in the club’s homecoming matches. It was the biggest since the 50-14 win over Newcastle in 2016.

At the double

With his double against the Bulldogs, left winger Edward Kosi has scored seven tries in his last four games and has eight in eight appearances this season.

Also with a strong strike rate is 19-year-old centre Viliami Vailea who marked his first NRL match in 10 weeks last Friday with his sixth try in seven games this season.

However, taking on the second-placed Cowboys in Townsville is an imposing challenge. While they’re coming off a last-up loss to the Sydney Roosters they’re formidable at home.

A Shaun Johnson field goal gave the Vodafone Warriors a 25-24 golden point win over North Queensland in Redcliffe in April.

In 44 contests since 1995, the Vodafone Warriors hold a 23-21 winning edge.

Vodafone Warriors

1 REECE WALSH

2 DALLIN WATENE-ZELEZNIAK

3 VILIAMI VAILEA

4 MARCELO MONTOYA

5 EDWARD KOSI

6 DAEJARN ASI

7 SHAUN JOHNSON

8 ADDIN FONUA-BLAKE

9 WAYDE EGAN

10 TOHU HARRIS (c)

11 EUAN AITKEN

12 JACK MURCHIE

13 BUNTY AFOA

Extended bench:

14 FREDDY LUSSICK

15 TOM ALE

16 ELIESA KATOA

17 JOSH CURRAN

18 CHANEL HARRIS-TAVITA

20 DUNAMIS LUI

21 JACKSON FREI

22 ADAM POMPEY

23 ROCCO BERRY

Head coach | STACEY JONES


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