Break over and Warriors are ready for action
Relaxed, fit, raring to go and in some cases even sporting decidedly bizarre looking new hair styles.
The Warriors went into their bye week on a low after a morale sapping loss to the Rabbitohs in Sydney at the start of the month.
But a week or so off, a chance to get away from the team environment and, yesterday, you could practically feel the enthusiasm brimming at the team's training at Mt Smart in Auckland.
You could also spot winger Manu Vatuvei's bright orange hair and beard from a mile away. Vatuvei apparently lost a bet and the punishment was to dye his hair. It will be, he says, gone by the end of the week.
Coach Andrew McFadden said the relaxed environment had translated into a hard hitting training session in preparation for Saturday night's game against the Broncos.
"I thought our quality was very good [at training]. I thought our energy levels and intensity was excellent.
"We were working really hard on our last plays and our transitions. We have obviously got a lot of quality in our team but there is just a few areas around the kick game and defending kicks that have been a bit of an issue for us."
The Warriors will face a Broncos side who, on paper at least, are depleted by Origin but McFadden expects the stars will line up come Saturday night.
"There is a lot of quality in their side so we are certainly going to have to be on our game there."
The Warriors have been boosted by the return of useful, and thoughtful, utility Ben Henry. Charlie Gubb also gets another shot in the top grade. Beside that is a largely unchanged lineup.
McFadden said it was great to have Henry back.
"He has been pretty unlucky over the last 18 months. I just hope he gets a bit of luck and can string some games together and I know the quality of footballer he is and he will be very valuable to us."
Henry said he, like the rest of the team, were champing at the bit to play the Broncos.
"It's quite refreshing for the guys. Some of the senior players had a whole week off to spend time with their families. It'll be good to get a win and get rid of that losing feeling."
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