Issac Luke's agent is on the search for a new club for the 32-year-old for next season — although there is still a possibility that the long time Kiwis hooker could be at Mt Smart in 2020.

Luke will start on Saturday night against the Broncos, and is currently the last man standing at the Warriors in the No 9 role.

Karl Lawton is out with a shoulder complaint, although the club are hopeful the Australian could return as early as next week in Wellington against the Sharks.

And Nathaniel Roache, who was seen as the No 1 hooker at the club coming into this season, tore his ACL against the Panthers two weeks ago and will have surgery next week.


Even if his operation and rehabilitation goes well, the 23-year-old will be a long shot to be match fit in time for the start of next season.

But Lawton's recent two-year deal signals that he is a big part of the future, while Roache is also signed for next season. Luke is not, and ideally the club won't want to carry three top line hookers in their first grade squad next season.

That means Luke, who has made it clear he wants to play on for a few more seasons, may have to find new pastures.

"I'm inquiring at the moment, looking around the market to see the lay of the land," said Luke's agent Bruce Sharrock. "We are considering all options. With the Karl Lawton re-signing they have kind of put a line in the sand there.

"We will see where we end up next year. I would like to sort something out sooner rather than later but it depends on the market. There are clubs that see value in him but it depends on the overall picture for them."

Warriors' Issac Luke in action against the Panthers. Photo / Photosport
Warriors' Issac Luke in action against the Panthers. Photo / Photosport

For now though, the 32-year-old continues to prove his worth.

Luke has been relegated to reserve grade twice this season, which must have been tough for a player of his standing, in his 13th NRL campaign, but performed well at Canterbury Cup level, a mark of his professionalism.

Luke made his NRL debut in 2007 and played 188 games for the Rabbitohs, before his move home in 2016.


He struggled for consistency in his first two seasons at Mt Smart, but enjoyed some vintage displays last year and was one of the best in the squad.

His performance was vital against the Knights last week — with Lawton not returning after the first quarter — and he will be key at Suncorp Stadium on Saturday.

The 265-game veteran remains the best distributor from dummy half at the club, is a strong defender and has a good kicking game, while is also the No 1 goal kicker in Patrick Herbert's absence.

"The reality is he is now back as our No 1 hooker again this weekend," said Warriors Football manager Brian Smith. "With Nate's serious injury, it probably opens the door a bit for him next season. There are a whole lot of possible outcomes for next season. One would be Issac is back with us, or he is not with us at all."

Smith is optimistic that Roache will make a full recovery, pointing out that despite his awful injury history, they have all been in different areas.

"We are all hoping that his operation goes well and he certainly knows how to rehab those things," said Smith. "He has never had a recurrence."

Jazz Tevaga will be the back up option at hooker this Saturday, should Luke need a spell. Tevaga, who has recently agreed a new contract with the club, has had six starts in the No 9 jersey, though most of those were during his debut season in 2016.