League: Johnson recovers to start for Warriors

Shaun Johnson. Photo / Getty Images
Shaun Johnson. Photo / Getty Images

Halfback Shaun Johnson has recovered from his elbow injury and has been named in the Warriors' season-opening NRL match against the Eels at Parramatta Stadium on Saturday.

The 22-year-old playmaker hyper-extended his right elbow during the Warriors' 16-10 trial win against Brisbane in Dunedin a week and a half ago.

The conservative view was that he could be out for three or possibly four weeks but coach Matthew Elliott was always optimistic Johnson would be ready to take on the Eels.

He was more than optimistic today after naming his first official NRL side since taking charge at the Warriors.

"I'm confident Shaun is ready to take on the Eels,'' he said.

"Our medical team has been working on him and he has recovered really well.''

As he did for the trials against Penrith in Hamilton and against the Broncos, the 38-game NRL player will be teamed in the halves with veteran Thomas Leuluai.

The starting line-up shows only one change from the one used against Brisbane - Glen Fisiiahi named on the right wing ahead of Bill Tupou. Second rower Ben Henry is on the bench, returning after missing the Dunedin trial with an ankle injury while utility Pita Godinet is also included.

Warriors team to play the Parramatta Eels at Parramatta Stadium on Saturday, kick-off 7.30pm NZT is: Kevin Locke, Glen Fisiiahi, Dane Nielsen, Konrad Hurrell, Manu Vatuvei, Thomas Leuluai, Shaun Johnson, Sam Rapira, Elijah Taylor, Ben Matulino, Feleti Mateo, Simon Mannering (c), Todd Lowrie. Interchange: Ben Henry, Jacob Lillyman, Sebastine Ikahihifo, Pita Godinet, Steve Rapira, Charlie Gubb.

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- APNZ

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