Big Ben makes his mark
Wed, 09 May 2012 6:45p.m.
By Sam Ackerman
Jerome Ropati will become the second longest-serving player at the Warriors, behind Stacey Jones, having signed on for his 11th season at the club.
The 27-year-old will start at fullback against the Roosters this weekend.
And the Mt Smart clash should see a real battle up front, where one other player is making quite an impression – usually with what some fans are dubbing the ‘shoulder of doom’.
He’s not one to talk himself up, but even Ben Matulino is impressed with his best ever start to an NRL season.
“I’ve broken it down pretty simply for myself – all I’ve got to do is go forward and tackle, and that’s pretty much me,” he explains.
Opposition teams aren’t finding him quite so simple; he leads the Warriors in hitups and is fourth best forward in the NRL for metres gained.
Warriors backrower Feleti Mateo says Matulino is the “best prop in the game” at the moment.
“His numbers in attack… outstanding.”
But Matulino says he’s not going out there to be the best prop.
“I’m just going out there to do my job.”
But Big Ben’s calling card is why the fans love him – and it’s certainly left its mark on those on the receiving end.
“Just seems to find me on the field,” Broncos Captain Sam Thaiday says. “I think his shoulder is still imprinted on my chest.”
After being roughed up by the Roosters four weeks ago, Matulino is primed for Saturday’s showdown.
“We’ve been waiting for this game,” he says. “They bullied us off the park and we’re looking to square it back up.”
So Roosters: consider that fair warning.
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10/05/2012 2:52:48 p.m.
i think the warriors need to sign Matulino long term. i heard he could be leaving the club?????
10/05/2012 2:35:46 a.m.
Jane Leilua wrote:
What a great game the Warriors played a great game. Ben your the man keep up the great work boys..only round 1 Leggoo :D
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