JAMES FORD has revealed his conversations with Pauli Pauli ahead of the forward's superb return at Widnes Vikings.

Pauli marked his first game back after suspension with a stand-out display in York City Knights' 32-6 win over Widnes.

The former NRL and Betfred Super League star was utilised in short stints at prop rather than in the second-row, where he had previously featured, with the move seeming to have a huge impact on his performance.

Added to that position switch was a discussion with head coach Ford prior to the Betfred Championship clash.“I spoke to Pauli as he was coming back off suspension," Ford revealed.

"We had a chat about how things were going and what we needed to do to help him get (better).

“I said to him, ‘What I’ve seen so far is Pauli and I want to see Pauli Pauli’. Against Widnes, I think we saw Pauli Pauli.

“Interchanging him with people like Ronan Dixon and Jack Teanby gives us more punch than what we’ve had historically.

“I think a lot about the other middles we’ve got here – Dixon, (Marcus) Stock, Teanby, (Joe) Porter, (Masi) Matongo, (Jordan) Thompson – but Pauli is a little bit different and he does bring more punch.

"But we’ve got to manage other areas around him as well.”

While keen to credit Pauli himself, Ford also pointed out that "the key is some of the other people around him.

"Having a hooker like Will Jubb who can defend to the levels that he defends at for 80 minutes and concentrate and guide us around the field, that saves us an interchange.

“And we’ve got Jordy Thompson, who can play 80 minutes. He could probably turn up, eat a Ginster’s pasty and we’d still get some quality rugby league out of him,” Ford laughed.

“We’re so fortunate to have those two players and I think that helps us get the best out of Pauli.”