Round 8B: NSW Cup v Warriors
Sportingbet Stadium, Penrith
Saturday, May 3
Referee: Adam Cassidy
PANTHERS – 1. DALLIN WATENE-ZELEZNIAK 2. EDDIE AIONO 3. TOM EISENHUTH 4. NATHAN SMITH 5. REGAN HAIKA 6. WILL SMITH 7. DANIEL FOSTER 8. SAM ANDERSON 9. RYAN SIMPKINS 10. LEILANI LATU 11. MATT ROBINSON 12. ANTHONY CHERRINGTON 13. VAIPUNA TIA KILIFI 14. MATT EISENHUTH 15. LIAM AYOUB 16. MITCH CLARK 17. ANDY SAUNDERS COACH: GARTH BRENNAN
WARRIORS – 1. KEVIN LOCKE 2. BRAXTON STANLEY 3. DANE NIELSEN 4. RAYMOND FAITALA-MARINER 5. JARROD TUA 6. STEVE WAETFORD (c) 7. TUIMOALA LOLOHEA 8. NATHANIEL PETERU 9. SAM COOK 10. CHARLIE GUBB 11. JOHN PALAVI 12. AGNATIUS PAASI 13. SIONE LOUSI 14. UPU POCHING 15. ALBERT VETE 16. SOLOMONE KATA 17. DAVID BHANA 18. BRADLEY ABBEY COACH: ROHAN SMITH
Saturday’s NSW Cup game between the Panthers and the Warriors is set to be one of the hottest contests of the round, with both teams proving to be fierce competitors early on in the season.
They’re sitting fairly close together on the ladder, with the same number of wins under their belts, but they had very different result’s last round, with the Panthers suffering a disappointing 26-20 loss to the Sharks while the Warriors thrashed Newtown 48-12. Penrith is keen to put that performance behind them and bounce back to their winning ways.
Panthers Coach Garth Brennan has been forced to name a very different side this week with a lot of players called up for rep duty. He’s asked a few of our Under 20’s players to step up and fill a few gaps, including Eddie Aiono and Regan Haika who will both start on the wings. Andy Saunders and Matt Eisenhuth will also get the chance to make their NSW Cup debut, starting on the bench.
Tom Eisenhuth and Captain Nathan Smith will start in the centres, Daniel Foster will take over the halfback position and Ryan Simpkins will start at hooker. Leilani Latu and Vaipuna Tia Kilifi have also been promoted to the starting side.
The Warriors will also have a new look team with four players set to make their Cup debuts. The experienced Dane Nielson will start in the centres, former Junior Warriors star Sam Cook will wear the #9 jersey, while current Under 20’s players Solomone Kata and Brad Abbey will start on the bench.
They will be without regular centres Dominique Peyroux and Carlos Tuimavave, as well as hooker Michael Sio who have all been called up for rep duty.
Both of these teams have been in spectacular form over the last few rounds, with the exception of Penrith’s loss last weekend, so Saturday’s match is sure to be a blockbuster! The Kiwis have it over the Panthers on size and they’ll be confident coming off that win last week, but Penrith have speed and agility on their side and will be determined to get their season back on track, so the game promises to come down to the wire!