3 Oct 2011

Hohaia comes up just short in Warriors swansong

1:43 pm on 3 October 2011

The departing Warriors veteran Lance Hohaia paid tribute to outgoing coach Ivan Cleary after the Aucklanders came up just short in their quest for National Rugby League glory losing 24-10 to Manly in Sunday night's grand final.

The young Warriors side were in the contest for most of the match and a fast finish would have had made many Manly fans nervous, but Cleary's men ultimately left their run too late despite being on the receiving end of some dubious refereeing decisions in the closing stages.

Hohaia, who's heading to Super League club St Helens, was the only Warriors player remaining from the losing grand final side of 2002 and although the Warriors couldn't give him and Cleary the fairytale finish they would have liked, Hohaia says the coach will leave the club with his head held high.