Warriors break new ground in final pursuit

Scott Bailey
The Warriors have enjoyed their best NRL season on the road as they close in on the finals

The Warriors have spent the season breaking new ground across the Tasman and must now just get the job done at home to end their seven-year NRL finals hiatus.

Saturday's 18-12 win over St George Illawarra in Wollongong was not only their first at WIN Stadium since 1996 but also a record one.

It marked their eighth win away from home this season - the most in the club's history - with seven of those victories chalked up in Australia.

Along the way they also notched their first win in Perth from 10 attempts, while they are now four points clear of the ninth-placed Wests Tigers in eighth spot.

The Warriors' run home over the final four weeks is also friendly, with Friday night's home clash with Newcastle the first of three against teams out of contention for the top eight.

"I think we've done a pretty good job of that all year," coach Stephen Kearney said.

"We're not focused about where we're playing, we just want to focus on our performances.

"With three games out of our next four at home, we haven't won at home in a while. We've played some pretty good teams.

"Our focus is making sure we recover well in the next few days and we have a really strong performance on Friday night."

Frontrunners early in the season, the Warriors had dropped four of their past five games headed into Saturday's win over the Dragons.

Questions were already being raised about their history of end-of-season woes, given before this season they'd won just eight of 43 post-State of Origin matches since 2012.

"We've done a pretty good job all year on just focusing on the present and now," Kearney said.

"For us we se set ourselves an expectation about last week.

"We feel we've worked really hard to get ourselves in the position to hopefully play in the second week of September.

"If we just keep our focus nice and clear on the task at hand and what we have to do as opposed to the bigger picture on the outside, then you can find yourself in some trouble."