1 Apr 2009

Ah Van replaces the injured Brent Tate at right centre

6:36 am on 1 April 2009

Stacey Jones will start at halfback for the Warriors for the first time since 2005 when they host face South Sydney in Auckland on Sunday afternoon and Patrick Ah Van will replace the injured right centre Brent Tate.

Ah Van has been used predominantly on the wing and sometimes at fullback in the 39 NRL appearances since his debut for the club in 2006 when he was just 18.

But his favoured position is in the centres and he started there in the first two trials against Melbourne and North Queensland in February.

With Jones back in the 7 jersey Nathan Fien goes to the interchange bench to provide cover at hooker and also halfback.

Tate has been sidelined for the season after rupturing a ligament in his right knee on Saturday. He is due to have surgery in two weeks.

Manu Vatuvei and Lance Hohaia are also out with knee injuries but it's hoped Vatuvei will be available again next week

The Rabbitohs beat the Warriors twice last season and have also won two of their three games.