Warriors forward Ben Matulino has become first Holden Cup graduate to reach the 150-game milestone. Credit: Colin Whelan. Copyright: NRL Photos.
Ben Matulino has played down the personal milestone he will reach when he runs out for the Warriors against the Sydney Roosters in Auckland on Sunday.
Matulino will hit the 150-game mark, becoming the first player in the NRL to reach that figure after having come through the under-20 NYC (Holden Cup) competition.
But he says he gets more of a kick from being part of others' landmarks, such as those for Ruben Wiki in 2008, Steve Price the following season and Simon Mannering in June.
"It's just another game, to be honest," he said of the clash with the premiers.
"I sort of get a buzz out of other people's milestones rather than mine. I was pretty stoked to play in Simon's 200th game, and Ruben and Steve Price's 300th."
Coach Andrew McFadden has shifted Matulino from the second row back to prop to give the Warriors greater punch up front after the disappointing 28-22 loss to Newcastle that left them eighth on the ladder.
It's a move Matulino is happy to make.
"I'd like to get my hands on the ball a lot more and put out a good first 20 minutes," he said.
"I don't care where I play at the moment, but it would good to challenge that strong forward pack."
Matulino, 25, made his NYC debut in the competition's first season in 2008. A few weeks later, he was in first grade.
He got his first Kiwis cap the following year and has gone on to play 19 Tests.
Matulino said one thing the Warriors would have to do against the Roosters was to limit their offloads.
It was something they didn't do enough of either in their win over Cronulla two rounds ago or against the Knights.
"Over the past two weeks our contact wasn't too good and they were just popping offloads everywhere," he said.
"If we get the Roosters pack doing that against us, we'll be blown off the park."