The utility is into his 10th season with the Warriors but it has already been a disjointed one. He has made six appearances this year but went off injured against both Manly (ankle) and the Roosters (hamstring). That followed the serious knee injury that restricted him to just three games last year, and the shoulder infection that ended his 2010 season.
Ropati is a valuable member of the club and this week will slot in at fullback to cover for the injured Kevin Locke and Glen Fisiiahi and out-of-sorts Krisnan Inu, but has spent too much time off the field in the past 18 months for the club to make any hasty decisions.
Ropati is still only 27 but has played only 136 NRL games, meaning he has missed on average 10 games a season with injury. While he is a classy operator, there is greater competition at centre with youngsters like Ben Henry and Konrad Hurrell coming through.
But one of Ropati’s greatest strengths is his utility value and he has played at centre, fullback, five-eighths, lock and wing for the Warriors. Invariably, when there was a problem in the early part of his career, Ropati could fix it in the same way Lance Hohaia did in his time with the club.