Which Vodafone Warrior will make All Stars?
Saturday 12 January 2013 8:44 PM
With the deadline fast approaching, utility Feleti Mateo (pictured) is leading the voting in the race to be the Vodafone Warriors' representative in the 2013 NRL All Stars. Photo: Photosport.
Fans have only a matter of hours left to play selector for the NRL and Indigenous All Stars teams with voting closing at 11.59pm on Monday, January 14 AEST (1.59am Tuesday, January 15 NZT).
So who will come through from the group of four players in contention as the Vodafone Warriors’ representative in the NRL All Stars (no Vodafone Warriors players are eligible for the Indigenous All Stars)?
At last count back rower-standoff Feleti Mateo had a fairly comfortable lead over halfback Shaun Johnson with Konrad Hurrell ranking third and 2013 Lion Red Player of the Year Ben Matulino surprisingly fourth.
The official voting pattern through www.nrl.com/allstars is at odds with a poll on www.warriors.co.nz which asks fans who they would rate as their first-choice Vodafone Warrior to make the NRL All Stars. Matulino tops the poll commanding 39 per cent of the votes followed by Johnson (27 per cent) and Hurrell (20 per cent) with Mateo registering 14 per cent.
About 16,000 fans have registered their selections at www.nrl.com/allstars for the 16 prized public-chosen spots in the 20-man squads for both teams for the fourth annual match to be played at Brisbane’s Suncorp Stadium for the first time on February 9.
Only one player from each club is eligible for Wayne Bennett’s NRL All Stars, while fans can choose from all of rugby league’s best Indigenous talent for Laurie Daley’s Indigenous All Stars. The final squads will be announced in Brisbane on January 16.
Top 10 in overall votes so far:
Indigenous All Stars:
1 Greg Inglis (Rabbitohs)
2 Greg Bird (Titans)
3 Ben Barba (Bulldogs)
4 Tom Learoyd-Lahrs (Raiders)
5 Jamal Idris (Titans)
6 George Rose (Sea Eagles)
7 Andrew Fifita (Sharks)
8 Justin Hodges (Broncos)
9 Nathan Merritt (Rabbitohs)
10 Joel Thompson (Raiders)
NRL All Stars
1 Jarryd Hayne (Eels)
2 James Tamou (Cowboys)
3 Brett Morris (Dragons)
4 Paul Gallen (Sharks)
5 Akuila Uate (Knights)
6 Billy Slater (Storm)
7 Michael Jennings (Panthers)
8 Josh Morris (Bulldogs)
9 David Taylor (Titans)
10 Adam Reynolds (Rabbitohs)
Following the closing of the public online voting, both coaches will be able to select additional bench players to complement the 16-man teams chosen by the public to make up a 20-man squad.
Bennett will select two extra players alongside automatic selections Benji Marshall (New Zealand captain) and Cameron Smith (Australian captain); while Daley will pick three extra players in addition to automatic selection and Indigenous All Stars captain Johnathan Thurston.