How Webster lured Tuivasa-Sheck back from All Blacks as Warriors set sights on reaching even greater heights


Former Warriors captain Roger Tuivasa-Sheck returned to the club to be part of coach Andrew Webster’s revolution, and the 30-year-old is set to start pre-season training next month.

The Warriors’ surge to the NRL preliminary finals in 2023, for the first time since 2011, led to sold-out crowds in Auckland. However, the return of Tuivasa-Sheck has added to the sense that the New Zealand-based club is just getting started.

A meeting with Webster confirmed to Tuivasa-Sheck that he wanted to get back in the NRL after two seasons of Super Rugby with the Blues, where the 2019 Golden Boot winner also made his All Blacks debut.

The 2013 premiership winner played 111 games for the Warriors before electing to play rugby union.

Warriors CEO Cameron George had kept in touch with Tuivasa-Sheck and his agent Bruce Sharrock during his rugby sojourn.

“Roger didn’t leave the Warriors because he didn’t like the club. It was a by-product of the whole COVID thing,” George told AAP.

“I’d kept in contact and earlier (in the year) sensed it might be a good time to have another chat to him.

“Roger had played under Webby (Webster) when he was an assistant coach here in 2016, and they had a chat about how he would play and add value to the current roster we have got.

“We provided him with a plan. He had some time to sit back and watch what Webby was doing with the club. Roger wanted to be part of Webby’s tenure.”

Webster told Tuivasa-Sheck that current New Zealand No.1 Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad would stay at fullback in 2024, but highlighted how he had a vital role to play in the outside backs, most likely at centre.

He signed a three-year deal through to the end of 2026.

“Roger will start training in mid-November and has popped in a few times already. He is looking good,” George said.

Roger Tuivasa-Sheck (Photo by Tony Feder/Getty Images)

“His professionalism and the standards he brings day in and day out will enhance our whole squad and improve the environment the young players grow up in.

“He will add value to our organisation as much as he will on the field. Roger is an impressive human.”

Webster’s role in securing Tuivasa-Sheck and his rapport with his players is just another reason the Warriors extended the coach’s contract this week until the end of 2028.

“It is not a risk. We have identified a person who is suitable for our club, our future and what we stand for,” George said.

“Coaches are getting harder and harder to find, so when we have someone really well connected with what we are, who we are and why we are what we are, it is important to give them and us certainty about our future.”

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