Test run for Warriors centres in NRL trial

Warriors coach Andrew McFadden has named new signing Blake Ayshford and last year’s star rookie Tuimoala Lolohea in the centres for Saturday’s final NRL pre-season match against St George Illawarra in Nelson.

Manu Vatuvei, heading into his 13th NRL season, holds down his customary role on the left wing and Roger Tuivasa-Sheck is at fullback, with Solomone Kata on the right wing.

In the starting front row, the experienced Ben Matulino and Issac Luke are joined by 2015 rookie prop Albert Vete while Simon Mannering is in the second row for his last game as captain alongside his successor Ryan Hoffman.

Ligi Sao, back home after a stint with Manly, has the loose forward’s job.

The nine-man bench includes more front row options in Charlie Gubb and James Gavet, both outstanding in last Saturday’s 40-18 trial victory over Gold Coast.

NYC-eligible Ata Hingano is again included after impressing in the halves last week. He was one of four NRL Nines squad members used in Whangarei along with Gubb, Albert Vete and wing Ken Maumalo.

Warriors: Roger Tuivasa-Sheck, Solomone Kata, Blake Ayshford, Tuimoala Lolohea, Manu Vatuvei, Jeff Robson, Shaun Johnson, Albert Vete, Issac Luke, Ben Matulino, Simon Mannering, Ryan Hoffman, Ligi Sao. Interchange: Matt Allwood, Charlie Gubb, James Gavet, Nathaniel Roache, Ben Henry, Konrad Hurrell, Jonathan Wright, Sam Lisone, Ata Hingano.

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