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Lousi and Fusitua out for today's Vulcans' game

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Vodafone Warriors Sam Lousi and David Fusitua are both out of the Auckland Vulcans’ line-up with injury for today’s New South Wales Cup encounter with the Illawarra Cutters at WIN Stadium in Wollongong (1.10pm kick-off local time: 3.10pm NZT).

Both players lined up for the Vulcans in last Saturday’s 26-40 loss to Newtown and were originally selected for today’s contest but didn’t travel with the side for what is one of the most testing road trips for the Auckland side.

With Fusitua (elbow) out, Zoram Watene comes onto the wing while Vodafone Junior Warriors second rower Raymond Faitala, recently signed on a one-year NRL contract for next season, replaces Lousi (ankle).

Back in the side after missing last week’s outing is veteran centre Jerome Ropati, who was honoured at Thursday’s double testimonial organised by Sir Peter Leitch and his team. Ropati was acknowledged by the club as a 10-season Vodafone Warrior last year but didn’t have an event like a testimonial luncheon at the time.

Today he’s paired up in the centres with Sio Siua Taukeiaho while Pita Godinet and Carlos Tuimavave are again in the halves.

Coming into the squad on a five-man bench are Vodafone Junior Warriors Visesio Setefano and Esera Esera with Setefano set to join current NYC team members Siliva Havili and Albert Vete plus former Vodafone Junior Warrior Nathaniel Peteru on the final interchange combination. With last week’s loss the Vulcans slipped to seventh on the ladder. They’re on 21 points while the Cutters sit 10th on 15 points but come into the match confident after drawing 16-16 with competition leader Cronulla last week.

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