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'ED3N - THE RISING' rising fast



ED3N - THE RISING is just 12 days away - 12 days until the Vodafone Warriors play their first home game of the season and 12 days until Sonny Bill Williams is back on Eden Park but this time playing the greatest game of all and turning out for the Sydney Roosters.
The billboards have been up for a month, newspaper advertising has been running and so have radio commercials.
The Vodafone Warriors' 2013 Official NRL Season Guide is out and so are the club's NRL and NYC team posters.

In just five days the Vodafone Warriors kick off the 20th campaign in the club's history when they face the Eels at Parramatta Stadium on Saturday, March 9 (5.30pm kick-off; 7.30pm NZ time).
Then on Saturday, March 16 all roads will lead to Eden Park for the club's third visit to the country's biggest stadium when the Vodafone Warriors face SBW, James Maloney and rest of the Roosters for ED3N - THE RISING (7.30pm kick-off with the Vodafone Junior Warriors playing the young Roosters in the NYC curtain raiser at 5.15pm).
The last of Sonny Bill Williams' 19 rugby union Tests for the All Blacks was the 22-0 win there against Australia in August last year. In all he played eight times for the All Blacks at Eden Park.
With the catchcry ‘Rise with Us’, ED3N - THE RISING is set to be another blockbuster.

The 2011 opener against Parramatta drew a crowd of 38,412, a club record for a home game, with another huge attendance of 37,502 turning out for last year’s first-round clash against the Manly Sea Eagles.
The Roosters rank among the competition’s most glamorous clubs, underlined by the buying spree they went on for 2013, their biggest signing unquestionably that of New Zealand double international Sonny Bill Williams; he’s returning to rugby league after leaving the game in 2008 to switch to rugby union. Also signed by the Bondi Junction club was 2010-2012 Vodafone Warrior James Maloney and just a few days ago the Roosters inked a deal with Penrith centre Michael Jennings.
They also boast a potent Kiwi connection despite losing Kiwi winger Sam Perrett last season. Showing a liking for players with hyphenated names they not only have SBW but also Kiwi internationals Jared Waerea-Hargreaves, Frank-Paul Nuuausala and Shaun Kenny-Dowall plus the promising Roger Tuivasa-Sheck. Others on the roster with New Zealand connections include former Vodafone Junior Warrior Adam Henry, Tinirau Arona, Lama Tasi and Anthony Cherrington.
Major sponsor SKYCITY is the game day sponsor of an occasion which will also feature the highly-successful Vodafone Junior Warriors, the only team to make the finals in each of the NYC’s first five seasons in existence. The NYC match is sure to kick off at 5.15pm.
This season the Vodafone Warriors will play home and away matches against the Roosters, South Sydney, Canberra, Melbourne, Gold Coast, Brisbane, Manly, Cronulla and Penrith while they’ll have only one-off games against Parramatta (away), North Queensland (home), Canterbury-Bankstown (home), Newcastle (home), Wests Tigers (away) and St George Illawarra (away). 


Any thoughts on the team for this week.

Not sure whether Elliott will make many changes. I guess he won't want to push the panic button after 1 game.

For me the most important thing would be to shift Elijah Taylor out of Hooker. 


I hope we run some 2nd, 3rd man plays down SKDs side. If we can get him and RTS to come in off their line it could be beneficial for us. We'll have to watch out for JWH, FPN and SBW though :) 


Who's coming in for Manu? 


They were talking about Tupou coming in on the radio. Not really a fan of this myself, but am unsure on who else they could use. other than moving Nielsen to the wing and bringing in another centre. But not Ropati as after the Broncos game, he needs a lot more footy under his belt if he is to play in first grade again. 


Yeah Mupp, I thought Leuluai would have been given the start at hooker myself last week. Shit, Tupou, i almost forgot he was still around. I just hope we can do the basics right and stop playing dumb football. We've got far too much talent in this club to be playing so poorly and that's the frustrating thing. But hey, we're only one week into a long season. If we can find the style of football that suits us we'll be away. Sooner rather than later would be good but. 


Yeah mate, that would be good. 


Will Ben Henry be back this week?

What about Peyroux in for Manu? I haven't seen any trials but has he been travelling ok? Same with Seijka? Thought he would have been good in the halves with Leuluai at starting hooker. 


Ben Henry is back and will start from the bench. Tupou will replace Vatuvei. Unsure of what the story with Peyroux is, haven't heard any news on him so far. 


Vodafone Warriors head coach Matt Elliott has made two changes to the starting line-up for Saturday night’s opening home game of the 2013 NRL season against the Sydney Roosters at Eden Park (7.30pm kick-off; Vodafone Junior Warriors 5.15pm kick-off).
One change was forced following the ankle injury which forced veteran winger Manu Vatuvei off the field in the 18th minute of last Saturday’s encounter with the Parramatta Eels.
Vatuvei (27), who was making his 153rd appearance, is set to be out for two or three games.
Returning in his place against the Roosters will be experienced Bill Tupou, who brought up his 50-game milestone last season. He turned out for the Auckland Vulcans in their 24-26 loss to the Manly Sea Eagles in the New South Wales Cup last weekend.
The other change sees Steve Rapira coming into the starting line-up in the second row with Feleti Mateo going to the interchange.

Last weekend the Rapira brothers created their own slice of history when they ended two frustrating seasons by playing their first NRL match together.
Ever since Steve returned home after a stint with the North Queensland Cowboys, injuries had thwarted their dream of playing together in the NRL. Steve was able to play just 11 matches across the 2011 and 2012 seasons while Sam also had injury setbacks.
In the 10-40 loss to the Eels, they were alongside each other for the first time for a short period of the match but on Saturday night they’ll start a match together for the first time and do so with family and friends among the crowd.
“It’s been a long time coming for Sam and Steve but at last they got to play together last weekend,” said Elliott.
“Now they’ll start together and do so on a massive occasion for the club at Eden Park.
“It’s a great place for us to play our first home game of the season. It’ll be a really big night for Sam and Steve but also for all of us, for the whole team, for everyone at the club and for our members and fans.
“We’re excited about it and would love to see a huge crowd there to enjoy it.”

Four sets of brothers have now played together for the Vodafone Warriors in official first-grade matches. Tea and Iva Ropati did so during Iva’s seven-game first-grade career in 1996-1997 as did Vinnie and Louis Anderson in 2004 (before Vinnie headed to England). Current education and welfare manager and 132-game Vodafone Warriors veteran Jerry Seuseu had his brother Anthony alongside him in his only NRL game against Brisbane in 2001.
The Roosters’ visit to Auckland will also mark chapter two of the Sonny Bill Williams show as the All Black-Kiwi double international continues his rugby league comeback after playing against South Sydney last week.
Eden Park, Auckland
7.30pm, Saturday, March 16


Round 3 selection hopes:

1) God did enough in round 2 to run on as starting Hooker for round 3. Taylor may be a tackling workhorse, but he still seems prepared to risk the no-look pass which was problematic last season. Start giving God more minutes at Taylor's expense.

2) Hurrell did enough to be banished to the Vulcans for the foreseeable future. He was a waste of a jersey especially early in the 2nd half when he let SKD in for a try.

3) Bill Tupou was an injury forced pick for round 2. He may have been gifted a try, but that doesn't obscure dumb-ass plays such as touching the ball just before it went dead early in the 1st half. The sooner Mr Bell recruits some new Wingers the better.

4) SJ's kicking (1 from 3 including what might end up as the most duffed conversion attempt of 2013) is enough to severally dent any chance of making the top eight. I give him credit for sparking the 2nd half revival and getting the crowd behind the team, but the minimum required conversion rate for play-off contention is around 66% on average and we need that now.

5) Mannering would have been kicking himself over his error rate with all the knock-ons and loss of ball in the tackle. Mateo also had high errors and seemed less than fully involved. But since these two are are automatic picks, they have to demonstrate immediate improvement.

With improved technique, round 2 could easily have been a repeat of round 6 of 2009. The Warriors were held scoreless as the Roosters headed to the sheds 16 points up at half time. In the 2nd half, the Warriors came back with 17 unanswered points in front of 16,000 delirious Mt Smart fans. It wasn't to be this time, but the Warriors are getting closer to breaking their streak.

Round 6 of 2009 WAR 17 (0 + 17) v SYD 16 (16 + 0)


3 Tries: Stacey Jones 52m, Jerome Ropati 61m, Manu Vatuvei 70m
1 Conversion: Denan Kemp 1/3 (33%)
1 Penalty Goal: Denan Kemp 1/1 (100%)
1 Field Goal: Stacey Jones


3 Tries: Iosia Soliola 18m, Shane Shackleton 22m, Mitchell Pearce 36m
2 Conversions: Craig Fitzgibbon 2/3 (66%) 



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