Hohaia's NRL versatility again to the fore - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Hohaia's NRL versatility again to the fore

Robert Lowe 24/06/2011 03:07:35 PM Comments (0)

Lance Hohaia's utility value is again being demonstrated in his 10th and final NRL season with the Warriors.

Hohaia will be back at his Kiwi Test position of fullback against competition leaders Melbourne in Auckland on Sunday, after spending the past two weeks coming off the bench to provide dummy-half cover.

He is understandably happy with his recall to the starting 13, which follows the unavailability of incumbent Kevin Locke and another fullback option, Glen Fisiiahi, both of whom are out with minor injuries.

"I always want to be out on the field for as long as possible," he said.

"It's unfortunate we've lost a couple of key guys.

"It's a matter of getting out there and doing my job the best I can."

It has been a bit of a mixed bag this year for Hohaia, who is the longest serving of the present Warriors and made the first of his 175 appearances in the club's grand final year of 2002.

He began this season in the No.1 jersey, but was dropped after the side lost their first three matches, with Fisiiahi taking over and producing a star turn as the Warriors beat Cronulla in Taupo to break their duck.

Fisiiahi was then injured, which meant Hohaia was back at fullback for one of the Warriors' best wins of the season, their 18-14 upset over the Storm in Melbourne in an Anzac Day thriller.

However, when Locke was given the opportunity as custodian early last month, he went on to make the spot his own with some strong performances before picking up a knee injury last weekend.

During his time at the Warriors, Hohaia has popped up in a range of backline positions and also at hooker.

When the 27-Test international heads to English club St Helens at the end of the year, he will get the chance to play in his preferred role of halfback.

In the meantime, he has no qualms about carrying out whatever duties are required of him.

"I've done it before over the years and that's my job," he said.

"I've played in allsorts of positions in my career. I'm definitely pretty familiar with fullback so I'm happy about getting back there."

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