The Warriors are ready to test their new power against the Tigers on Saturday at 5:30pm at Campelltown Stadium. The Warriors have high hopes in 2016 after a dismal end to their 2015 season. The arrival of their new star signings, Roger Tuivasa-Sheck, Isaac Luke, and Jeff Robson is likely to provide ample strength. However it could take some time for the team to fully adjust to the new spine combination. The Tigers had a dreadful off-season including injuries to a few players which has already damaged the strength of the starting team.

Last Time Out

The Warriors made the final of the Auckland Nines with Shaun Johnson and RTS leading the way which should be a strong indication of how the team will perform this year however it is a different game. They just came from an annihilation from the Dragons in a trial match.

The Tigers did not advance at the Nines; however, the players from their starting side looked sharp. They just came from a draw with the Sharks in their most recent trial.

Key Battles

James Tedesco vs. Roger Tuivasa Sheck

Without a doubt, these two players were the top two fullbacks in the 2015 season. They both have similar playing styles. They should clash plenty of times throughout the afternoon.

Mitchell Moses vs. Shaun Johnson

Moses has been given permission to play his natural game and Johnson has made a return from injury. They both have halfbacks playing beside them that are capable of managing the field which will allow these guys to play a more unpredictable style of football.

Prediction

While the Warriors will still be rusty heading into round 1 they will still be strong enough to defeat a Tigers side which is missing their two best hookers and have a weakened bench. Expect the Tigers to start strong and hold the lead in the first 20 minutes but once their forwards start to get tired the Warriors will come back. Shaun Johnson and RTS will probably make several errors between them but also flash brilliance.

Warriors win by 12 points.

Team Lists

Wests Tigers
1 James Tedesco
2 David Nofoaluma
3 Tim Simona
4 Kevin Naiqama
5 Jordan Rankin
6 Mitchell Moses
7 Jack Littlejohn
8 Aaron Woods (c)
9 Manaia Cherrington
10 Tim Grant
11 Curtis Sironen
12 Chris Lawrence
13 Sauaso Sue
14 Kyle Lovett
15 Josh Aloiai
16 Ava Seumanufagai
17 Jack Buchanan
18 Michael Chee Kam

New Zealand Warriors
1 Roger Tuivasa-Sheck
2 Tuimoala Lolohea
3 Blake Ayshford
4 Solomone Kata
5 Manu Vatuvei
6 Shaun Johnson
7 Jeff Robson
8 Jacob Lillyman
9 Issac Luke
10 Ben Matulino
11 Ben Henry
12 Ryan Hoffman (c)
13 Simon Mannering
14 Nathaniel Roache
15 Sam Lisone
16 James Gavet
17 Bodene Thompson
18 Jonathan Wright
20 Albert Vete

Referees: Ashley Klein, Chris Sutton