Bulldogs farewell Warriors-bound Watene-Zelezniak with passionate haka

Dallin Watene-Zelezniak's move to the Warriors is complete after being farewelled with a haka by Canterbury teammates.

Watene-Zelezniak told Bulldogs players after their 36-10 loss to Parramatta he had played his last game for the NRL club.

That prompted an impromptu haka in the sheds at Bankwest Stadium, led by Bulldogs welfare manager Luke Goodwin.

"Dal has been a big part of our squad for the past two years now," Bulldogs fullback Nick Meaney said.

"He spoke to us as a playing group, we are all pretty tight, he said his words and it's very emotional losing one of your close mates."

The Kiwis captain has signed a three-and-a-half year deal with the Warriors as part of a mid-season merry-go-round of NRL talent.

“It’s great news for our club and a terrific signing having Dallin on board,” said Warriors head coach Nathan Brown.

“He brings speed, leadership and experience into our young group and will be a major help to our developing younger players.

“Dallin has some wonderful attributes, has a well-rounded game and is a great competitor. We look forward to him joining us for the back end of this season and three more seasons after that.”

Bulldogs players and staff perform a haka for Dallin Watene-Zelezniak. Source: NRL

Watene-Zelezniak will be available to make his debut next month in their round 16 clash with the Dragons after this weekend's standalone Origin round is out the way.

He's also set to line up against his old club when he makes his first Warriors appearance at Mount Smart Stadium in their 22nd-round match against Canterbury-Bankstown on August 15.

The 25-year-old joins the club with 143 appearances for Penrith and Canterbury Bankstown under his belt along with 12 Test Caps for the Kiwis where he is currently captain. 

“It’s fantastic being able to bring the New Zealand captain into our squad,” said Warriors CEO Cameron George.

“He’s a highly-respected leader on and off the field and will be a major asset to our club and to the community.”

The Warriors had recently released winger Ken Maumalo to Wests Tigers, while Roger Tuivasa-Sheck will head to New Zealand rugby at the end of the season.

Watene-Zelezniak's exit also comes as part of a backline overhaul at the Bulldogs, freeing up further cap space with Josh Addo-Carr, Brent Naden and Matt Burton arriving in 2022.

- Additional reporting by AAP