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Accor Stadium will play host on Saturday, and coach Jason Demetriou’s men will certainly be ready to go off the back of a big win against the Bulldogs on Good Friday. If last week’s victory doesn’t buoy the Rabbitohs’ confidence ahead of this clash with the Warriors, the fact that they’re currently on an eight-match winning streak against the Auckland-based club most definitely will.

In fact, the Rabbitohs have won 14 of their last 15 matches against the Warriors, going all the way back to round five of season 2013 – exactly 11 years ago on Saturday – when the Rabbitohs got up 24-22 in a tight one in Auckland.

The two sides most recently crossed paths in round 18 of last season, the result being a 28-6 victory to the Rabbitohs on the Warriors’ home turf. Young star Tyrone Munro scored a try on debut that day, while Alex Johnston – in typical AJ fashion – scored a scintillating double. The Red and Green will unfortunately be without both players on Saturday, with Munro on the long-term injury list, while Johnston sustained a hamstring tear in round four against Canterbury-Bankstown.

Replacing Johnston on the left wing is Izaac Tu’itupou Thompson, who will be making his first appearance in the NRL for 2024.

Having debuted in first grade at 25 years of age in 2022, Tu’itupou Thompson is certainly a late bloomer by NRL standards. He’s proven to be a very handy replacement in the past for the Rabbitohs, scoring three tries in his ten appearances in the top grade, and will no doubt relish his return to the NRL by giving a good account of himself against the Warriors this Saturday.

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Tu’itupou Thompson will have fond memories of his only prior match against the Warriors in round 21 of season 2022. Not only did Thompson make his NRL debut in this game, but he also bagged a try as the Rabbitohs stormed home 48-10 winners on the Sunshine Coast. While Tu’itupou Thompson got plenty of plaudits for his efforts on debut, it was Latrell Mitchell who was the star of the show, bagging two tries of his own, setting up another two, and kicking eight out of eight goals in what was an absolute all-star performance from the big fullback.

Latrell also played a starring role in the previous year’s clash (also on the Sunshine Coast), when Rabbitohs put 60 on the Warriors, the fullback having a hand in two tries while scoring one of his own. Hooker Damien Cook too was at his scheming best out of dummy half, proving to be too fast for the Warriors’ ruck defence as he notched up two line breaks and 141 running metres, as well as three try assists.

For this weekend’s clash, all eyes will be on star recruit Jack Wighton, who was crucial for the Rabbitohs at left centre in their 20-16 win over the Bulldogs, scoring two tries and running for 141 metres. He’ll be looking to back that up with another big performance for the Red and Green, as he finds his feet at his new club and solidifies his place in the team. Jacob Host too will be revved up for this one. Off the back of his 100th NRL game last week, Host now plays his 50th NRL match for the Rabbitohs in what is a rare instance of consecutive milestone matches.

Host will once again line up in jersey number 12 and will be hoping that one of his creative inside men will be able to put him through for a try on the way to a second consecutive victory for the Rabbitohs in season 2024.

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