Southern hospitality a hit with Warriors

NATHAN BURDON
Last updated 05:00 25/02/2013
Warriors
ROBYN EDIE/Fairfax NZ
COMING THROUGH: Todd Lowrie makes ground for the Warriors in the NRL trial match against the Brisbane Broncos in Dunedin on Saturday night.

Relevant offers

League

Team-by-team guide to 2015 NRL season New Zealand Warriors may focus recruitment sights on England He won the golden boot last year as the world's best league player but Shaun Johnson is just getting warmed up Former Titans Ashley Harrison and Steve Michaels the latest players embroiled in cocaine scandal Rising Kiwis star Jason Taumalolo set to reject offer from Warriors and stay with the Cowboys Justin Hodges named as captain of the Brisbane Broncos Tim Sheens to stay on as coach of the Kangaroos after signing a one-year extension Ex Gold Coast Titans failed internal drug tests: report Kevin Locke's Scottish rugby move looks imminent Hard cash behind Melbourne Storm's trip to Napier, nothing else

New Warriors recruit Todd Lowrie hopes Saturday night's 16-10 trial win over the Brisbane Broncos won't be the last time the NRL club plays under the roof at Dunedin's Forsyth Barr Stadium.

More than 15,000 fans turned out for the Warriors' first game in Dunedin. They were treated to five second-half tries, and a brilliant tackle by league legend and Warriors trainer Ruben Wiki on a streaker at halftime.

"The atmosphere was semifinal-like, to be honest - the crowd was fantastic," said Lowrie, who has arrived at the Warriors via the Newcastle Knights, Parramatta Eels and 2012 premiership winners the Melbourne Storm.

"I think they don't get too much league down here so it was a bit of unknown on what it was going to be like but from the guys in the support staff who have been doing the community work, they said that the support has been fantastic for us," Lowrie said.

"That's good, I hope they can get a bit more league down here."

Lowrie was arguably the best of the Warriors players as they held the Broncos scoreless during the first half and took a 2-0 lead courtesy of a Shaun Johnson penalty just before the break.

The Broncos were frustrated by the television official after getting the ball over the line four times in the first half hour.

Johnson didn't see out the second half after he was taken from the field clutching a forearm, but the Warriors managed to run in three second-half tries, including the game-winner to Lowrie with 10 minutes to go.

"It's my first hit out for the year and I was just trying to get a few cobwebs out of the legs and lungs," Lowrie said.

"I thought I did that and I thought we all went really well.

"Our effort was outstanding, but we were pretty scrappy in areas.

"It has to be expected, the Broncs were as well.

‘Hopefully we can fix up a few things and hook into Parra [Parramatta Eels] in round one," he said.

Warriors coach Matthew Elliott praised Lowrie's debut performance, along with the performances of Glen Fisiiahi and Pita Godinet off the bench.

He also paid credit to the way the southern public had supported the game in Dunedin.

"What a fantastic facility and what a great crowd," Elliott said.

"The [crowd] numbers are important, but the spirit and the fact they had a great time while they were here, that's probably just as important as the amount."

The result was a welcome one for the Warriors.

Ad Feedback

They lost their last eight games of the 2012 season and had also lost both of their previous pre-season games to Penrith and the Gold Coast.

They open their 2013 campaign against the Parramatta Eels in Sydney on March 9.

AT A GLANCE

Warriors 16 (Manu Vatuvei, Glen Fisiiahi, Todd Lowrie tries; Shaun Johnson pen, Pita Godinet con) Broncos 10 (Lachlan Maranta, Justin Hodges tries; Scott Prince con). HT: 2-0.

- The Southland Times

Special offers
Opinion poll

Who is your pick for international league player of the year?

Shaun Johnson

Jesse Bromwich

Sam Burgess

James Graham

Greg Inglis

Johnathan Thurston

Vote Result

Related story: (See story)

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content