McKinnon eyes return - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

McKinnon eyes return

By Mark Geenty 03/08/2008 01:02:35 PM Comments (0)

Coach Ivan Cleary hopes to recall gamebreaker Wade McKinnon against Brisbane on Saturday as the New Zealand Warriors regroup from Saturday night's ugly NRL speed bump.

With a spot inside the top-eight beckoning, the error-ridden Warriors lost 18-16 to Souths at Sydney's ANZ Stadium to end a four-match winning streak.

Handling errors by the Warriors led to the Rabbitohs' first two tries, while the visitors butchered three touchdowns of their own.

"We let ourselves down ... particularly at this stage of the season, two points is very valuable and we just didn't give it a good shot which really hurts me and the other 16 boys sitting in the dressing room," captain Steve Price said.

Victory would have elevated the Warriors into the top eight, as rivals Penrith, Gold Coast and St George-Illawarra also lost, but instead they remain in the logjam on the fringes of the eight.

Three wins from their last five matches should be enough to book a playoffs spot but it's a tricky run in against Brisbane (home), Cronulla (home), St George-Illawarra (away), Penrith (home) and Parramatta (away).

Cleary hinted the Warriors could face the Broncos at full strength for the first time this year as fullback McKinnon eyes a return from a long-term knee injury.

"He's pretty close but he's still got to get through some things at training," Cleary said.

"As long as there's no setbacks, fingers crossed he'll be back on the field soon. He's a chance next week."

That leaves Cleary with a selection headache because fullback Lance Hohaia was one of the Warriors' best against Souths, scoring two tries.

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