Date: Sunday, August 24, 2014
Venue: Mt Smart Stadium
Kick-off: 2pm (local) 4pm (EST)

Teams

New Zealand Warriors: Sam Tomkins, David Fusitua, Konrad Hurrell, Ngani Laumape, Manu Vatuvei, Chad Townsend, Shaun Johnson, Jacob Lillyman, Thomas Leuluai, Ben Matulino, Ben Henry, Simon Mannering, Sebastine Ikahihifo. Interchange: Feleti Mateo, Suaia Matagi, Sione Lousi, Nathan Friend, Jayson Bukuya, Sam Rapira, Dominique Peyroux

Sydney Roosters: Anthony Minichiello (c), Daniel Tupou, Michael Jennings, Shaun Kenny-Dowall, Roger Tuivasa-Sheck, James Maloney, Mitchell Pearce, Jared Waerea-Hargreaves, Mitchell Aubusson, Sam Moa, Boyd Cordner, Aidan Guerra, Frank-Paul Nuuausala. Interchange: Rémi Casty, Isaac Liu, Dylan Napa, Kane Evans, Jackson Hastings

Preview

The New Zealand Warriors will be desperate to get back in the winners circle this round when they host the Sydney Roosters at Mt Smart Stadium on Sunday.

The Warriors side come from a disappointing loss to an in form Newcastle Knights side while their opponents did a demolition job on the Wests Tigers last week.

Shaun Johnson made a successful return from injury last week and will start again for the Warriors. In a boost for the New Zealand side, wrecking ball centre Konrad Hurrell is set to return from a hamstring injury.

The game will also mark Ben Matulino’s 150th NRL game for the Warriors, making him the first player to reach the milestone after graduating from the NYC competition, a sign of his consistency.

If the New Zealand side is to claim the points they will need all their gears to click, as once again the Roosters look to have hit red hot form.

The main concern for the Roosters will be in the fact they seem to be at their best for a short period before suffering unexpected losses, a trend the Warriors will try to continue.

However, every game played brings the end of the career of retiring captain Anthony Minichello closer and as a result the Roosters will not be lacking any motivation over the coming weeks.

Both teams are highly ranked in scoring points, with the Roosters 3rd highest point scoring team this season (523 points), while the Warriors sit just below them (511 points) as fourth highest.

The major difference between the two sides is defence, the Roosters having conceded 80 less points than their hosts. It could be a telling difference between the two sides.

 

Prediction

Roosters by 8