jazz tevaga
SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - APRIL 18: Jazz Tevaga of the Warriors and Marcelo Montoya of the Warriors celebrate victory with fans during the round six NRL match between the St George Illawarra Dragons and the New Zealand Warriors at Netstrata Jubilee Stadium, on April 18, 2021, in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Jason McCawley/Getty Images)

The New Zealand Warriors have confirmed they will return to Auckland later this season to end a 716-day wait between home games.

The club confirmed on Wednesday morning that the Warriors will head back to Mount Smart Stadium for their Round 22 clash with Canterbury on August 15.

Warriors chief executive Cameron George stated his excitement after the announcement of the club’s return home.

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“This is going to be one of the biggest and certainly most emotional days in our great club’s history,” George said, per the club website.

“We are all so excited knowing we are finally set to see the Vodafone Warriors, sponsors, families, members and fans coming together for a game day like no other on August 15.

NRL Rd 25 - Warriors v Raiders
AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND – AUGUST 31: The Warriors gather around for a huddle during the round 25 NRL match between the New Zealand Warriors and the Canberra Raiders at Mt Smart Stadium on August 31, 2018 in Auckland, New Zealand. (Photo by Anthony Au-Yeung/Getty Images)

“There’s no doubt these will be the hottest tickets in town. What we want now is to see Mount Smart Stadium packed to the rafters to support the team and to farewell Roger.

“The club as a whole has made huge sacrifices to keep the competition going during the Covid-19 pandemic but it’s our families, members and fans back home in New Zealand who have suffered the most through not being able to connect with their team. Their continued support and patience has been incredible.

“Our special thanks go to the NRL for providing ongoing support. We can’t say enough about what they’ve done for us over the last two seasons.”

The Warriors also confirmed that the match will also be held as a farewell for departing captain Roger Tuivasa-Sheck, in what will likely be his final home game with New Zealand.

The return to Auckland will end a 20-game streak of home matches for the Warriors in Australia, with further details surrounding their move across the Tasman yet to be confirmed.

The Warriors played a key role in keeping the 2020 NRL season alive, moving to Australia for a majority of the year and residing in New South Wales in a club bubble.

The club expecting a sell-out game, with tickets on sale for the match this week.