Focused Warriors primed for NRL charge

It's unusual for a 24-point drubbing to be described as "awesome" but you wouldn't argue with Warriors skipper Roger Tuivasa-Sheck about anything at the moment.

Red-hot fullback Tuivasa-Sheck is pointing to last month's embarrassing 36-12 loss to the Gold Coast Titans as the wake-up he and his team needed.

The seventh-placed Kiwi club have since outplayed St George Illawarra and Newcastle to all-but book a finals berth.

At the forefront has been Tuivasa-Sheck, returning the football in devastating fashion.

Every defender beaten and metre chewed up is based on a more narrowed approach, he says, with the 25-year-old now realising he had spent too much energy on what he thought a captain should be doing.

The result at Robina was a turning point.

There had been other big losses this season but they were to competition heavyweights Souths, Melbourne and the Sydney Roosters.

This time coach Stephen Kearney labelled his players "soft" and asked them to look closely at themselves, his skipper included.

"That Gold Coast game was awesome because it gave us a bit of a lesson. You can't go over there with that type of attitude," Tuivasa-Sheck said.

"When we were called 'soft' by coach, a lot of us took it real personal.

"Lately that's what's happening, everyone's taking their performance real personal and the preparation's been a lot better going into games. We're a lot more focused."

The result is a club on a high three weeks out from the playoffs.

It's a far cry from what they've become used to in recent, under-performing seasons.

"Times like this when it was getting to the end and we knew we weren't making the top eight, a few of us would shy away from coming to training and putting in that work," Tuivasa-Sheck said.

"That's what I'm enjoying, just coming into work and there's some good vibes around the club.

I'm happy for the players who have been here for so long. The staff members also, who are now cheering and just enjoying their time."

There was more good news on Tuesday, with Leivaha Pulu cleared of any serious damage from a foot injury suffered against the Knights.

Pulu is likely to be fit to face the Bulldogs while fellow-second rower Tohu Harris (knee) could be a back a week later against Penrith.