Warriors star recruit Roger Tuivasa-Sheck has declared his new club free of a culture problem and is determined to turn around their reputation as the most frustrating team in the NRL.
Tuivasa-Sheck had his first outing in his new colours on Saturday as part of the NRL Auckland Nines at Eden Park.
Just four months ago the Kiwi Test fullback was brought to tears when he pulled off his Sydney Roosters jumper for the last time but said he was “feeling the love” from the Warriors faithful after his first outing.
The Warriors have been saddled with expectation due to the signings of Tuivasa-Sheck and ex-South Sydney hooker Issac Luke with coach Andrew McFadden sure to feel the heat if they don’t deliver in the first few rounds.
The Warriors were criticised for their poor culture last year after losing their last eight games – two by 50-plus margins – to tumble from the top four and miss the semi-finals.
They were accused of putting the cue in the rack and their dedication came into focus when Konrad Hurrell, Dominique Peyroux and Manu Vatuvei were seen partying on stage with rapper Ginuwine two nights before their massive loss to Wests Tigers.
Tuivasa-Sheck said he had spent the pre-season trying to work out what had gone wrong the last couple of seasons but had seen nothing but enthusiasm from his teammates.
Renowned as the best trainer at his former club, he said he was just trying to set a good example and hoped his work ethic rubbed off on his new teammates.
“I’ve come over and tried to pinpoint what’s going wrong and how they’ve been losing but they’ve been stepping up this year and we’re excited to show that on the field,” Tuivasa-Sheck said.
“Having a bit more experience I have the confidence to talk to the players and say `hey bro let’s go out and me and you do some drills’. It’s been good like that, the boys have responded.”
Tuivasa-Sheck says he was feeling at home in his native country and is ready to show his scintillating best.
“I feel good, I’m proud to be a Warrior and have my first run out here,” he said.
“I was emotional (after his last Roosters game) because I put 100 per cent into that club and I created good bonds there and now I’m in New Zealand and I’m creating good bonds here.”