Warriors power home in Mannering's 200th

The New Zealand Warriors have come home strongly to defeat the Newcastle Knights 38-18 in their first Mt Smart home game of the year, in front of over 19,000 fans.

Strangely for a Warriors home game, the opening salvo was fired by the visiting side, with Tyrone Roberts plucking a Jarrod Mullen kick out of the air to open the Knights' account for the afternoon and have them leading 6-0 early. It wasn't long though before man of the moment - and LeagueUnlimited.com's man of the match Simon Mannering got his side on the scoresheet in his 200th NRL game for the club.

The hosts backed this up with Sam Tomkins cleaning up the scraps of a Johnson cross-field bomb, pushing the Warriors to a 10-6 lead. The lead was extended again by a Manu Vatuvei try just short of the half-hour mark, before Newcastle calmly restored order and put Joey Leilua in out wide after 35 minutes. It was Mannering again just before halftime powering over for the hosts, bagging his double just before the break to ensure a ten-point buffer.

It was a second-half punctuated with a few too many errors, mostly from Newcastle, which allowed the Warriors to steam home. The Knights scored first in the second half, reducing the margin to just four after 54 minutes through a powerhouse try from Robbie Rochow, but that would be all for the visitors.

A messy try to Chad Townsend gave the home side some breathing space before late four-pointers to both Konrad Hurrell and a second for Manu Vatuvei meant the scoreline probably flattered the Warriors, but nevertheless got them the result they were after.

Next week the Warriors' assignment is the longest trip in the NRL - they're headed to nib Stadium in Perth to face the South Sydney Rabbitohs. Newcastle head home and will don their NSW Mining tribute jersey against the Wests Tigers on Sunday at Hunter Stadium.


Match Details
New Zealand Warriors 38 Newcastle Knights 18
Venue: Mt Smart Stadium
Crowd: 19068
Halftime Score: New Zealand Warriors 22 Newcastle Knights 12

LeagueUnlimited.com Players of the Match:
3 points - Simon Mannering
2 points - Manu Vatuvei
1 point - Tyrone Roberts

NEW ZEALAND WARRIORS (38)
Tries: Simon Mannering (2), Sam Tomkins, Manu Vatuvei (2), Chad Townsend, Konrad Hurrell
Conversions: Shaun Johnson (5/7)

NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS (18)
Tries: Tyrone Roberts, Joseph Leilua, Robbie Rochow
Conversions: Josh Mantellato (3/3)


LeagueUnlimited.com Live Commentary

Welcome to Mt Smart Stadium for, would you believe, the first time this season! Should be a good game with the Knights looking to lift themselves above the bottom and the Warriors still trying to find form.
LATE MAIL - the Warriors are 1-17 but their visiting side is nothing like the one named Tuesday. OUT are Akuila Uate and Beau Scott. Josh Mantellato comes in for Uate, while Scott's omission forces a reshuffle. David Fa'alogo comes into the front row, Willie Mason drops to the bench, Korbin Sims and Adam Cuthbertson will start in the back row while Jeremy Smith will drop to the bench, joining Mason, Adam Clydsdale and Chris Houston.

It would also be remiss of us not to mention the great Simon Mannering - the big Warriors captain marks his 200th game in the NRL this afternoon. Congratulations Simon!

We're underway at Mt Smart! Newcastle with those Twitter hashtags on their backs today with a betting company competition, great fan engagement there!

5: UNFORCED ERROR NEW ZEALAND WARRIORS
Manu Vatuvei makes an unforced error.

Big Manu Vatuvei makes a mess of a downtown kick. Newcastle with the first chance of the day...

6: TRY NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS
Scored by Tyrone Roberts. Kick to come.

TRY TIME! Tyrone Roberts flies through the air to pounce on a Jarrod Mullen lofted kick under the posts!

8: SUCCESSFUL CONVERSION NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS
Conversion attempt by Josh Mantellato successful.

Mantellato assumes kicking duties for the day and he makes no mistake with his first attempt.

10: Warriors now venturing inside Newcastle territory. If I get either side confused it's because they're both wearing red, white and blue. Horrible clash.

11: TRY NEW ZEALAND WARRIORS
Scored by Simon Mannering. Kick to come.

Only took eleven minutes and the CAPTAIN has scored for the Warriors in his 200th! Fantastic, grubber and regather, superb!

13: UNSUCCESSFUL CONVERSION NEW ZEALAND WARRIORS
Conversion attempt by Shaun Johnson unsuccessful.

Shaun Johnson's shanked his first attempt. Not going to well with the boot lately the Warriors!

17: Great work by Ngani Laumape to trap Josh Mantellato in goal. Newcastle drop-out.

19: TRY NEW ZEALAND WARRIORS
Scored by Sam Tomkins. Kick to come.

Tomkins is in! Warriors overcoming that slow start... beautiful crossfield kick from Johnson and it's batted back straight to Tomkins.

20: SUCCESSFUL CONVERSION NEW ZEALAND WARRIORS
Conversion attempt by Shaun Johnson successful.

That's better Shaun! Conversion good, Warriors up by four.

23: The Knights test Tomkins with a high ball but he takes it. Next play Konrad Hurrell goes nuts with a line break up the middle.

24: Penalty for the NZ folks, they start the set just 20m from the Knights' line.

24: TRY NEW ZEALAND WARRIORS
Scored by Manu Vatuvei. Kick to come.

Manu Vatuvei rises above and takes it! What a try!

26: SUCCESSFUL CONVERSION NEW ZEALAND WARRIORS
Conversion attempt by Shaun Johnson successful.

SJ nails his second from three attempts. Strong performance from the hosts!

29: Mantellato takes the last tackle high ball with a foot in-goal so it's a 20m restart. That's compounded by a penalty so the Knights now have it inside the Warriors' 40m.

30: TRY NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS
Scored by Joseph Leilua. Kick to come.

Newcastle go wide, a beautiful grubber from Roberts and it's Joey Leilua winning the race.

32: SUCCESSFUL CONVERSION NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS
Conversion attempt by Josh Mantellato successful.

Mantellato adds the extras and the Knights are right back in it!

35: Jarrod Mullen down injured for Newcastle. He's up and okay now but a few nervous moments there after the last time he appeared in Auckland...

39: TRY NEW ZEALAND WARRIORS
Scored by Simon Mannering. Kick to come.

A double for the captain! Mannering scores his second in the shadows of halftime to give the Warriors a buffer going into the break!

40: SUCCESSFUL CONVERSION NEW ZEALAND WARRIORS
Conversion attempt by Shaun Johnson successful.

Ten points the difference at halftime as Johnson adds the extras.

40: We're back on with the Warriors in possession first.

43: Long range kicks by each side to start the half. Warriors currently working it off their own line.

47: UNFORCED ERROR NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS
Kurt Gidley makes an unforced error.

Ahhhh Gidley with an error. Warriors scrum just inside Newcastle territory.

49: Newcastle luck out with a penalty coming off their own line. Good metres this set too, fourth tackle inside the 20m!

50: UNFORCED ERROR NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS
James McManus makes an unforced error.

McManus can't get hold of a Gagai flick pass. Ouch. Warriors scrum on their own 10m.

52: Johnson hoists it high on the last. It bounces around repeatedly.... and now Josh Mantellato is down injured. He's unconcsious it appears.

54: TRY NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS
Scored by Robbie Rochow. Kick to come.

Rochow is over for the Knights, a great run!

56: SUCCESSFUL CONVERSION NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS
Conversion attempt by Josh Mantellato successful.

Mantellato is ok and he converts as we see here gap back to just four.

59: UNFORCED ERROR NEW ZEALAND WARRIORS
Sam Tomkins makes an unforced error.

Tomkins escapes a few tackles before coughing it up... giving the Knights a set starting on halfway!

60: VIDEO REFEREE possible WARRIORS try... and Darius Boyd has come from the clouds to run down David Fusitua... TRY SAVER!!!!! NO TRY!

61: The men upstairs confirm what we thought, it's NO TRY. Newcastle scrum 10m out from their own line.

64: Up to the sky again... VIDEO REFEREE being called upon for a possible try to Warrior Chad Townsend. It's green lights.

64: TRY NEW ZEALAND WARRIORS
Scored by Chad Townsend. Kick to come.

Warriors jump back in front by eight with an unusual ricochet which ends with Chad Townsend scoring.

65: SUCCESSFUL CONVERSION NEW ZEALAND WARRIORS
Conversion attempt by Shaun Johnson successful.

Johnson makes it a ten point lead with just over fifteen to go.

70: Newcastle attacking, they need a big showing... but Rochow runs it on the last... and is held. Handover.

74: TRY NEW ZEALAND WARRIORS
Scored by Konrad Hurrell. Kick to come.

The Warriors spread it wide and Konrad Hurrell blows Newcastle away. That's the ball game.

76: UNSUCCESSFUL CONVERSION NEW ZEALAND WARRIORS
Conversion attempt by Shaun Johnson unsuccessful.

Johnson's attempt hits the posts.

78: Mantellato trapped in goal, a drop-out to come from Newcastle. Strong finish from the Warriors.

79: TRY NEW ZEALAND WARRIORS
Scored by Manu Vatuvei. Kick to come.

Manu loves it! Dives over and gives his side a great finish!

80: SUCCESSFUL CONVERSION NEW ZEALAND WARRIORS
Conversion attempt by Shaun Johnson successful.

Unreal finish to this one, the Warriors have stormed home for a 20 point victory. Johnson converts.

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