Rain check: Price says Warriors need it wet
Former Warriors captain Steve Price says he hopes conditions allow his old team to get into a grind against North Queensland at Mt Smart Stadium on Monday night.
"If they were able to control the speed of the game and play some simple footy it would help build their confidence," Price said. "If they could roll their sleeves up and get into a tough grind, it would allow them to concentrate on the basics of what they have to do to get back into gear.
"The Cowboys won't want it to be that sort of game. They've got a terrific forward pack, but they'll still want to play an up-tempo game because that really suits their attacking style. But I'm hoping there's a bit of rain about to slow the game down a bit.
"I always loved the wet games because it slowed everyone else down to my speed. There hasn't been much rain over here this year, but just in the last couple of days there's been a little bit, so I'm hoping a bit more comes for the game.
"But I've learned you can't try and predict what's going to happen with the weather over here. There could be a cyclone, or it could be 25 degrees and fine. We'll just have to wait and see."
Price, who still lives in Auckland, no longer has any official role with the club, but he still goes to the home games to support the team and says he is feeling for the Warriors at a time when they are going through a horror stretch.
The Warriors lost their last eight games of last season and have continued that losing run through the first three rounds of this season.
Price says the first thing the Warriors have got to do if they want to beat the Cowboys is forget about how many games they have lost in a row.
"The biggest problem will be if they start thinking that one win will solve everything," he said. "They've got to concentrate on their performance, and rely on the wins coming from there. It's got to be an ongoing process.
"You guys in the media talk about how many they have lost, but the players have to forget about that stuff. They can't control what's happened before, they can only try to control what happens in their next game.
"We've got a new coach, in Matthew Elliott, and a new playmaker, in Thomas Leuluai. If you remember, it took time for James Maloney to click when he first came here as a playmaker, and it's naturally taking Thomas a bit of time as well.
"Plus, Kevin Locke has been in and out for a while at fullback, and Manu Vatuvei has been in and out on the wing. So injuries have disrupted things a bit as well. And a new coach brings a new style, and players have to adapt to that.
"The Warriors have just got to concentrate on getting the best out of themselves for this game. They need to forget about the previous results, prepare well, know what the opposition is going to throw at them and go out and play.
"They should approach it with, not arrogance, but confidence in their ability to get it right."
Price said the Warriors had badly missed experienced hooker Nathan Friend, whose start to this season has been delayed by shoulder surgery.
"They've been a bit one one-dimensional, and a bit predictable around the middle," he said. "Elijah Taylor is trying really hard at hooker, but he's still young and developing as a player, so this is a difficult period for him.
"We haven't been a threat across the field so far this season. We haven't made the opposition work hard enough, and we obviously need to do more in that area. Hopefully, Thomas and Shaun (Johnson) will get the time and space they need against the Cowboys.
"The Cowboys are going to be pumped up to perform well after they were disappointing against the Knights, and we're going to have to match that. If it's a tight, arm-wrestle type of game that will help us, but whatever happens we've got to make sure we compete.
"We've got to play our style of game well, and that will make it hard for the Cowboys to play the way they want to play."