Tuimavave shown door

BY STEVE KILGALLON
Last updated 10:14 08/06/2009

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The Warriors plan to punt Kiwis world cup winner Evarn Tuimavave and hit the market for a quality frontrower for next season.

They are also looking immediately for a centre or secondrower after being turned down by St George Illawarra's Chase Stanley.

The only football Tuimavave has played this year was a game for Auckland club side Richmond, and the Sunday Star-Times understands the Warriors' patience in waiting to judge his fitness has expired.

Although Tuimavave has played more NRL than either Sam Rapira or Russell Packer, he has clearly been leapfrogged by both, while Newcastle recruit Jesse Royal has also shown up better than expected.

Another prop, Leeson Ah Mau, who played twice this season before suffering a hamstring injury, has also been told he isn't wanted for 2010.

The club has, of course, re-signed Steve Price and extended the contract of Upu Poching, a young frontrower yet to play first grade, but will want six props next year. Sources say the Warriors have gone to the market and talked to agents about which established first graders would be available.

Ah Mau's exit appears to stem from the club's frustration at slow negotiations with his agent, Jim Banaghan. "Our deadline came and went and we had not made progress so we have told Leeson he is free to pursue other interests," said chief executive Wayne Scurrah. It's thought Ah Mau already has a deal lined up with another NRL club.

Scurrah confirmed the club had looked for a centre/backrower as cover for the rest of this season, saying the late Sonny Fai had never been replaced.

The Warriors approached Stanley last week but he didn't want to move to Auckland. That scuppers suggestions of a an immediate swap deal with the Dragons for halfback Nathan Fien, due at Kogarah next year anyway. The club, would, however, consider any early-release request from Fien.

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- Sunday Star Times

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