Newspaper article Sunshine Coast Daily (Maroochydore, Australia)

Frequent Flyers Seek Ultimate Destination

Newspaper article Sunshine Coast Daily (Maroochydore, Australia)

Frequent Flyers Seek Ultimate Destination

Article excerpt

Byline: STEVE JANCETIC of AAP

IT'S the 16,000km journey some suggest is a bridge too far, but the Warriors claim their arduous path to tomorrow's grand final might just be what helps deliver the club an inaugural premiership.

The Auckland-based club has made return trips to three different states up and down the Australian eastern seaboard to secure a start at ANZ Stadium.

Their clash with the Manly Sea Eagles is the culmination of a month which has yielded some big-name scalps Co and plenty of frequent flyer points.

But while critics suggest the constant travel back and across the Tasman, totalling almost 16,300km, will take its toll tomorrow. Warriors players say it has brought the playing group closer together.

In essence, they have been on a series of mini-camps throughout September, the players and staff getting just two days at home this week following the win over Melbourne before setting up camp in Sydney on Wednesday.

C[pounds sterling]I remember at Parra, you would see each other at training and then you would just rock up for the game,C[yen] Warriors backrower and former Eel Feleti Mateo told media.

C[pounds sterling]The lead-up to games (with the Warriors), when you're in the hotels having breakfast, meals together, it really helps us bringing the team together.

C[pounds sterling]I think it's a real advantage.C[yen]

Centre Lewis Brown said the travel didn't take a toll and if anything, it worked in the team's favour.

C[pounds sterling]We're a tight-knit bunch of blokes. Travelling with each other, we know how the other person operates,C[yen] Brown said.

C[pounds sterling]We love coming away.C[yen]

However not all within the Warriors camp see the benefits of the tough travel regime.

In highlighting the enormity of his side's achievement in making the grand final, Warriors director John Hart said, C[pounds sterling]I don't think people realise the pressure that this team goes through, travelling every second week to Australia. …

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