As the NRL season reaches its business end, Warriors coach Brian McClennan has warned against comparing this year's team with the side that fought their way to the 2011 grand final.
The Warriors sit in eighth spot on the NRL ladder after recent triumphs over the Cowboys and Titans, and could score a Queensland sweep with victory over the Broncos at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane on Friday.
Yet McClennan does not want to get swept up in playoff talk or Warriors team comparisons.
His focus is simple: play each game as it comes.
"It's very dangerous to start looking too far ahead or talking about what happened last year," he said. "It's irrelevant. We're playing against a very good side in the Broncos, with a great tradition and a great ground. We'll just focus primarily on that."
Last season the Warriors won seven of their final nine encounters to grab a playoff spot, which they ultimately converted into a date in the decider with the Sea Eagles.
While McClennan sees the experience as positive for the players last year, he does not consider it a burden for him or the club.
"It's not a burden; it's actually been an experience that is really good for the players," he said. "It helps you know to concentrate on one game at a time, because that's what was happening last year."
The Warriors, who will welcome back Manu Vatuvei after surgery on his left knee less than three weeks ago, play a Broncos team likely to feature Origin stars Justin Hodges, Petero Civoniceva and Sam Thaiday.
McClennan was full of respect for the Broncos, who sit fourth on the NRL ladder with 24 points.
"They're powerful, they're well directed around the park," the former Kiwis coach said. "They've got that attacking threat right throughout. They play right at you and they're a difficult side to defend. Defensively, they're very sound there too. They work really hard for each other and they're a hard side to break down.
"They've been tipped by plenty to be right in there in the business end of the season, and it's easy to see that. When we played them last time [when the Warriors won 30-20], I thought they were really, really good. I thought it was one of our hardest games, so we know we're in for a tough one."
Rookie centre Konrad Hurrell, who has 12 tries in 12 first-grade appearances, will sit out the clash after injuring his ankle in his three-try performance against the Titans last weekend.
McClennan was confident Hurrell, who was wearing a moonboot during training at Mt Smart Stadium yesterday, would be in action against the Knights at home the following weekend.
Utility Lewis Brown will take Hurrell's place in the centres, as Vulcans regular Sebastine Ikahihifo joins a five-man bench, hinting at a first-grade debut for the 21-year-old.
Warriors: Kevin Locke, Bill Tupou, Ben Henry, Lewis Brown, Manu Vatuvei, James Maloney, Shaun Johnson, Russell Packer, Nathan Friend, Ben Matulino, Feleti Mateo, Simon Mannering (c), Elijah Taylor. Interchange (from): Omar Slaimankhel, Sione Lousi, Jacob Lillyman, Steve Rapira, Sebastine Ikahihifo.
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