29 Apr 2016

Six Warriors axed for protocol breach

3:19 pm on 29 April 2016

Six players being axed from the Warriors' National Rugby League match against St George-Illawarra on Sunday after an investigation into a breach of team protocol.

Coach Andrew McFadden dropped Manu Vatuvei, Ben Matulino, Bodene Thompson, Albert Vete, Sam Lisone and Konrad Hurrell for failing to meet team standards.

Warriors winger Manu Vatuvei

Manu Vatuvei is one of six players dropped for this week's match. Photo: Photosport

RNZ understands the players in question had been out drinking in town on Tuesday night, following their humiliating 42-0 loss to the Melbourne Storm.

Warriors general manager Jim Doyle said he was disappointed players weren't meeting the professional standards expected, but he wouldn't comment on whether they had been out on the town.

"We're not going to speculate on any rumours, as I say, we've dealt with it internally, whether they're accurate or not... I mean I've heard a few people say a few things already and so I'm not going to say which ones are right and which ones are wrong.

"But no, we've dealt with it and as far as we're concerned we're not going to talk about any more of the detail."

Doyle said at this stage the players would only be stood down for one game.

The changes open the way for 21-year-old prop Toafofoa Sipley to make his NRL debut, while Sione Lousi, John Palavi and Matt Allwood will receive NRL recalls.

McFadden said he wouldn't confirm his starting line-up for Sunday's game until an hour before the match.

Warriors coach Andrew McFadden

Andrew McFadden Photo: PHOTOSPORT