1 Jul 2012

Friend to play full 80 for Warriors

12:23 pm on 1 July 2012

The New Zealand Warriors will return to the National Rugby League competition on Sunday when they host the North Queensland Cowboys at Mount Smart Stadium in Auckland.

The Warriors currently sit two points outside the top eight while the Cowboys are fifth.

The game is before the State of Origin decider next Wednesday and the Cowboys will be missing Jonathan Thurston, Matthew Scott, Brent Tate and James Tamou.

The Warriors are missing players too, with Sam Rapira, Manu Vatuvei and Jerome Ropati all out injured.

Brian McClennan says the Warriors need to out perform the Cowboys with what they've got.

Brian McClennan has included Nathan Friend, who's been out with a fractured jaw, in the team to play the Cowboys on Sunday.