General Warriors Preseason 2019

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New faces at preseason training

Several new faces are among the players on deck for the Vodafone Warriors’ NRL preseason training programme.

General manager football Brian Smith has confirmed contract formalities have now been completed for former Penrith halfback Adam Keighran, who joins the club’s 2019 NRL squad.

Keighran has appeared 26 times at Intrust Super Premiership level for the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs (2017) and the Penrith Panthers (2018).

A left-footed goal kicker, he scored 202 points in 23 games for Penrith this year (10 tries, 81 goals).

Fiji Bati centre Taane Milne, who played 18 NRL games for St George Illawarra in 2016-2017, has been signed on a trial contract as has another back Adam Pompey. He made 40 under-20 appearances for the Sydney Roosters in 2017 and 2018 and also debuted in the ISP for the Wyong Roos this year.

Signed on a development contract is prop Jackson Frei, another ex-Sydney Roosters under-20 and Wyong Roos ISP player.

Others confirmed on development contracts are:
  • Paul Turner, a Northland rugby league product, who has been promoted from the Vodafone Warriors’ Jersey Flegg squad.
  • Eliesa Katoa, a much sought-after, athletic rugby union No 8 from the Tamaki College First XV.
  • Selestino Ravutaumada, who starred for both the Rotorua Boys’ High School First XV and First XIII; he also played for the New Zealand Secondary Schools (rugby league) in 2017.
Another player signed from a rugby union background is highly-touted back rower Neyla Masima, who starred for St Patrick’s College, Silverstream, which again won Wellington’s First XV title this year. He will join the club’s Jersey Flegg under-20s squad for 2019.
 
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Good to see skip back at training.

Also the bloke to the left is Neria Fomai a Samoan 7s player, and the bloke to the right is patrick herbert
 
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Really frustrates me that we won't see our full squad back on deck until so much later on than the other teams. Discounting the Tongan pair (Fusitua and Kata) we've got a whole 8 players in Kiwis camp right now (Johnson, Blair, Hiku, Paasi, Papalii, Beale, Ah Mau and Maumalo). Add into that the other three who probably would have been picked if it hadn't been for injuries (Luke, Roger Tuivasa-Sheck and Harris) and that's almost our entire starting side missing the first few weeks of pre-season...

1. Roger Tuivasa-Sheck
2. Fusitua
3. Beale
4. Kata
5. Maumalo
6. Hiku
7. Johnson
8. Ah Mau
9. Luke
10. Paasi
11. Papalii
12. Harris
13. Blair

Might not be a popular idea but I'd like it if the senior warriors players and team management sat down and hashed out a rep system that would allow us to get a good start to the pre-season. Could be something like; in non-World-cup years we cap participation and rotate players around from year to year ie max 5 players per country and only 1 spine player allowed (seeing as they're the most valuable), one year we let Johnson, Maumalo, Beale, Ah Mau and Papalii go... the next we'd go with Roger Tuivasa-Sheck, Hiku, Paasi and Blair and so on.

Obviously the club wouldn't be able to enforce this (it would have to be voluntary) and it would be a bad look to most people, but given all the other things that the Warriors have to deal with as a club (specifically travel and not being able to acclimatize to Australia's weather until the season's started) I think it's something we have to do.

We saw this season the effect a good off-season with a good coach has on the team, imagine the improvement we would get if we had more people back from day dot.

**Mods feel free to move this if you think it should be in an international league thread, I just though it had more relevance here
 
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Yup, at this point I'm a little more intrigued by the NSW Cup side than the first grade side as far as selections go.

I think the top side largely picks itself with a couple of contentious spots, but the NSW Cup side will reveal a lot about who is being fast tracked, who is out of favour and who is getting developed below NSW Cup level.
 
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WarriorBall

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Could be something like; in non-World-cup years we cap participation and rotate players around from year to year ie max 5 players per country and only 1 spine player allowed (seeing as they're the most valuable), one year we let Johnson, Maumalo, Beale, Ah Mau and Papalii go... the next we'd go with RTS, Hiku, Paasi and Blair and so on.

If that ever happened I would assume International Rugby League had done a complete 180 and died in the arse.

Clubs capping player participation and ultimately preventing them from rep jerseys and match payments would have the RLPA locking horns with the NRL and player strikes would no doubt follow.

I don’t get the thinking at all, for me it’s always been Country before whatever club you happen to play for. Imagine the uproar if club rugby franchises in NZ didn’t release all their players for All Black selection because they wanted their players to complete preseason training! it obviously wouldn’t see the light of day and League would be no different because it just runs counter to well... everything!

It’s just preseason training man, NRL players are doing the same shit at their various clubs this time of year and Rep players aren’t worse off because their not running stairs in the Waitaks or dunes at Bethels.

The most interesting thing about preseason training is learning who the new guys are that turn up in the first couple of weeks.
 
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Good to see skip back at training.

Also the bloke to the left is Neria Fomai a Samoan 7s player, and the bloke to the right is patrick herbert

WOW shit, Milne, Pompey and Herbert!

Eels chased Herbert hard, Dragons wanted to keep him too. Many had him starting in the centres for them in 2019. Herbert surely must be on a fulltime contract here now?

Ok Warriors gained some raw, rated and quite talented firepower in the backs. This takes me back to the days of Meli, Webb and Fa'afili arriving on the scene. Very exciting, we really truly are shaping up nicely. This must be O'Sullivan. When was the last time we were signing smokeys like this? Daniel Anderson?

SO realistically we could be looking at potentially Milne and Herbert on full time contracts? Pompey and Herbet both can play wing but best suited to centre. Wow im pretty excited with what is shaping up here. I think Herbert could be quite a player in the NRL as well. If I was Kata, Hiku and Beale id be playing like muthaF@ckers from hell this year. Preseason will be intensely competitive. Milne and Herbert will add a lot of firepower and ball playing to the backline.

Super value pick ups!

Shit we have a freak talented fijian to through into the mix too, soosomea and Perham there as well. No wonder we cut so many players.
 
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If that ever happened I would assume International Rugby League had done a complete 180 and died in the arse.

Clubs capping player participation and ultimately preventing them from rep jerseys and match payments would have the RLPA locking horns with the NRL and player strikes would no doubt follow.

I don’t get the thinking at all, for me it’s always been Country before whatever club you happen to play for. Imagine the uproar if club rugby franchises in NZ didn’t release all their players for All Black selection because they wanted their players to complete preseason training! it obviously wouldn’t see the light of day and League would be no different because it just runs counter to well... everything!

It’s just preseason training man, NRL players are doing the same shit at their various clubs this time of year and Rep players aren’t worse off because their not running stairs in the Waitaks or dunes at Bethels.

The most interesting thing about preseason training is learning who the new guys are that turn up in the first couple of weeks.

The good thing for international rugby league is that we've got a lot of good kiwi players at other clubs which means we don't have to take all the burden. 8 players mate. It could be as many as 11 if it weren't for injuries. I don't know of any other clubs who provide that many players for end of year tours and certainly not any who do while travelling as much as we do.

Again I didn't mean that the club would enforce this system, it would have to be voluntary. I mean for it to be a hand-shake agreement between the senior players to put the Warriors ahead of the Kiwis for a few seasons and let some of the younger guys go rep the club. I don't know about you guys but I think a Warriors premiership would do way more for league in NZ than a victorious tour of england ever would.

Your point about the NZ super rugby franchises doesn't work. Those guys have a set calendar that takes provincial, domestic and international competitions into account and fits them all into a year where no one gets burned out or over-used. All the NZ teams fall under the NZRU reign whereby regular All Blacks are either given sabbaticals or regular rests and they rarely play the full 80min throughout the season due to the nature of interchanges in the sport.

We on the other hand have a much longer, more intense NRL competition which requires the best players to be used as often as possible for as long as possible and includes fortnightly trips across the tasman followed by a mid-length international window at the end. The current rugby league calendar doesn't work well for us at all.

You say that it's just pre-season but I think we're missing a whole lot from it. Corvo said himself that he'd love to have a full off-season with Roger Tuivasa-Sheck and Johnson which tells me that there's more improvement in them. Add in the development of team chemistry and familiarity and it becomes a lot. I think of it like this. If our 8 kiwis all come back one week after everyone else that's a whole 8 weeks of work and preparation that's lost. In any other business losing that many man hours would put you behind in some kind of way, how would it be any different for us.
 
I would say that the players who are selected for rep teams usually come back as better players (as long as they don't pick up injuries), so the good outweighs the bad...except when it's a mid year test in Denver haha
 
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I would say that the players who are selected for rep teams usually come back as better players (as long as they don't pick up injuries), so the good outweighs the bad...except when it's a mid year test in Denver haha

For me this is a big thing. Especially since the Warriors haven’t played a lot of finals football recently. The only exposure to levels higher than regular NRL was internationals.
 
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I think the best example is Ken Maumalo. He had a good season for the Warriors but I think on this UK tour he has really kicked on and shown some things that I've never seen from him on a consistent basis, at arguably the highest level.

I know I'd rather him have done that than just be doing fitness stuff at Mt Smart.
 
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I think the best example is Ken Maumalo. He had a good season for the Warriors but I think on this UK tour he has really kicked on and shown some things that I've never seen from him on a consistent basis, at arguably the highest level.

I know I'd rather him have done that than just be doing fitness stuff at Mt Smart.

The thing I value for Ken is the confidence he appears to have gained.

Everyone else.....keep running laps.

Nah it's quite a good looking preseason with the new faces.

All the reps will come back to a new environment having been established.

It's great that Karkz and Captain Marvellous etc will get the benefit of a good pre season.
 
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WarriorBall

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The good thing for international rugby league is that we've got a lot of good kiwi players at other clubs which means we don't have to take all the burden. 8 players mate. It could be as many as 11 if it weren't for injuries. I don't know of any other clubs who provide that many players for end of year tours and certainly not any who do while travelling as much as we do.

Again I didn't mean that the club would enforce this system, it would have to be voluntary. I mean for it to be a hand-shake agreement between the senior players to put the Warriors ahead of the Kiwis for a few seasons and let some of the younger guys go rep the club. I don't know about you guys but I think a Warriors premiership would do way more for league in NZ than a victorious tour of england ever would.

Your point about the NZ super rugby franchises doesn't work. Those guys have a set calendar that takes provincial, domestic and international competitions into account and fits them all into a year where no one gets burned out or over-used. All the NZ teams fall under the NZRU reign whereby regular All Blacks are either given sabbaticals or regular rests and they rarely play the full 80min throughout the season due to the nature of interchanges in the sport.

We on the other hand have a much longer, more intense NRL competition which requires the best players to be used as often as possible for as long as possible and includes fortnightly trips across the tasman followed by a mid-length international window at the end. The current rugby league calendar doesn't work well for us at all.

You say that it's just pre-season but I think we're missing a whole lot from it. Corvo said himself that he'd love to have a full off-season with Roger Tuivasa-Sheck and Johnson which tells me that there's more improvement in them. Add in the development of team chemistry and familiarity and it becomes a lot. I think of it like this. If our 8 kiwis all come back one week after everyone else that's a whole 8 weeks of work and preparation that's lost. In any other business losing that many man hours would put you behind in some kind of way, how would it be any different for us.

Your wasting your time with me I’m afraid because you’ll never be able to convince me that a club jersey is worth more than a national jersey, you’d have a harder time still convincing players to give up playing for their Country to do a preseason with Corvo.

Even without my bias logically it doesn’t stack up because your dismissing out of hand the wishes desires and future earnings of the players themselves. It’s something you’ll never be able to get around unless the RLPA all of a sudden died in the arse and the clubs took a dictatorial approach to the aspirations of its players, could happen but highly unlikely.
 
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Your wasting your time with me I’m afraid because you’ll never be able to convince me that a club jersey is worth more than a national jersey, you’d have a harder time still convincing players to give up playing for their Country to do a preseason with Corvo.

Even without my bias logically it doesn’t stack up because your dismissing out of hand the wishes desires and future earnings of the players themselves. It’s something you’ll never be able to get around unless the RLPA all of a sudden died in the arse and the clubs took a dictatorial approach to the aspirations of its players, could happen but highly unlikely.

Likewise. From my side I think the long international window puts a burden on the Warriors season and I'll hold those reservations until we win a premiership. There's so little separating teams in this comp that I think even the smallest things would have a big effect in the long run.

There is however the benefit of players developing their games in the international window ala maumalo so hopefully that'll work for us in some way.
 
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Really frustrates me that we won't see our full squad back on deck until so much later on than the other teams. Discounting the Tongan pair (Fusitua and Kata) we've got a whole 8 players in Kiwis camp right now (Johnson, Blair, Hiku, Paasi, Papalii, Beale, Ah Mau and Maumalo). Add into that the other three who probably would have been picked if it hadn't been for injuries (Luke, Roger Tuivasa-Sheck and Harris) and that's almost our entire starting side missing the first few weeks of pre-season...

1. Roger Tuivasa-Sheck
2. Fusitua
3. Beale
4. Kata
5. Maumalo
6. Hiku
7. Johnson
8. Ah Mau
9. Luke
10. Paasi
11. Papalii
12. Harris
13. Blair

Might not be a popular idea but I'd like it if the senior warriors players and team management sat down and hashed out a rep system that would allow us to get a good start to the pre-season. Could be something like; in non-World-cup years we cap participation and rotate players around from year to year ie max 5 players per country and only 1 spine player allowed (seeing as they're the most valuable), one year we let Johnson, Maumalo, Beale, Ah Mau and Papalii go... the next we'd go with Roger Tuivasa-Sheck, Hiku, Paasi and Blair and so on.

Obviously the club wouldn't be able to enforce this (it would have to be voluntary) and it would be a bad look to most people, but given all the other things that the Warriors have to deal with as a club (specifically travel and not being able to acclimatize to Australia's weather until the season's started) I think it's something we have to do.

We saw this season the effect a good off-season with a good coach has on the team, imagine the improvement we would get if we had more people back from day dot.

**Mods feel free to move this if you think it should be in an international league thread, I just though it had more relevance here

Agree with this except to point out that RLWC17 and all the players who came back to pre-season late didn't have much of a negative impact in 2018, since we did make the finals. The most a club can do and keep in everybody's good books, especially the NZRL's is have players going public and saying "in consultation with my family, doctor, the local boozehound in the faded 1995 Warriors jersey and the magpie that wakes me up at 4am every bloody morning, I'm withdrawing from the Kiwis Test/Test Series in October/November to get my body right for next year." SK or CG fronting the decision, rightly or wrongly, would look like "My bosses say I'm too owie to play for the Kiwis and I'm not gonna piss them off, so sorry Kiwis!"

And, of course, the Warriors could plan for certain players to "pull out" only to have genuine injuries mean that certain players will be needed by the Kiwis.
 
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Agree with this except to point out that it didn't have much of a negative impact in 2018, since we did make the finals. The most a club can do and keep in everybody's good books, especially the NZRL's is have players going public and saying "in consultation with my family, doctor, the local boozehound in the faded 1995 Warriors jersey and the magpie that wakes me up at 4am every bloody morning, I'm withdrawing from the Kiwis Test/Test Series in October/November to get my body right for next year." SK or CG fronting the decision, rightly or wrongly, would look like "My bosses say I'm too owie to play for the Kiwis and I'm not gonna piss them off, so sorry Kiwis!"

And, of course, the Warriors could plan for certain players to "pull out" only to have genuine injuries mean that certain players will be needed by the Kiwis.

The other thing is with these fringe guys like Hiku, Paasi and Beale who didn't even get a run. While it's a big positive to learn from players in other clubs and get exposed to the international environment I'd probably prefer those guys stayed at home if they weren't going to take the field.

The Kiwis coaches could easily have found a few replacements from other (less represented) NRL clubs who would be just as deserving, no need to raid our playing stocks as much as they have been.
 
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It is the aim of pretty much all players to represent their country and all the history and tradition that goes with it. Let them go for it. Missing some pre season is a small price.
 
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NRL is a bit more like American sports where winning the club comp can often be more prestigious than winning for your country.
I’m only guessing but if you asked the kiwi squad I’d they would have won the NRL grand final for their club or won the series against England I would be surprised to hesr them choose the international comp.
(Probably off topic and should be moved/ deleted).
 
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