NRL: Lance spearheads signings

By Michael Brown

Lance Hohaia is indispensable to the Warriors these days and they moved to sign him up until the end of 2011, with an option for 2012.

At times during his NRL career, the 26-year-old hasn't known whether he was coming or going, such was his lot with the Warriors.

He's played all manner of positions, including left-right-out, but he is now one of the most integral players at the club.

His versatility – he's played halfback, five-eight, hooker, centre, wing and fullback since making his debut as a 19-year-old in 2002 – means he is one of the first names placed on the team sheet each week.

And the increased pace of the game in 2009 due to the two referees and less reliance on the video referee is tailor-made for his elusiveness and acceleration as opposition forwards tire.

"Lance had made huge strides for us and for the Kiwis," Warriors coach Ivan Cleary said.

"He's a vital part of the mix and brings so much to the side. He has really turned the interchange role into his special strength for us."

Hohaia's re-signing follows that of fellow World Cup-winning Kiwis Simon Mannering and Jerome Ropati, who have both re-signed until the end of 2012.

That means Hohaia joins Ropati with the chance of becoming a rate 10-year veteran of the Warriors - only Stacey Jones and Awen Guttenbeil have achieved the feat.

"I'm excited about having my future sorted out and knowing I now have the chance to be a Warrior for 10 seasons," Hohaia said.

"I've grown up at the club. It's been my home since moving up from Huntly and I can't see myself being anywhere else.

"I've seen some tough times along the way but the last year or so has been the best of my career, being part of two finals campaigns and then winning the World Cup with the Kiwis."

Hohaia will miss today's visit to Newcastle with a knee injury but it is hoped he will return next weekend to face the Roosters.

The Warriors will now turn their attentions to hooker Ian Henderson.

He is off contract at the end of the season, along with Steve Price, Jones, Nathan Fien, Evarn Tuimavave, Liam Foran, Aidan Kirk, Patrick Ah Van and Malo Solomana.

- Herald on Sunday

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