Stage is set for a blockbuster NRC


4/09/2018



By NSW Rugby Media

The NSW squads for this year’s National Rugby Championship (NRC) have been confirmed, featuring a mix of experienced internationals, promising youngsters and a familiar rugby league recruit.

The NRC will bring together some of the best young talent in NSW alongside outstanding club rugby players and NSW Waratahs.

Half of the NSW Country squad have strong links in the State’s regions while Sydney boasts some Shute Shield finalists and Parramatta Eels rugby league youngster, John Folau.

NSW Country Coach Darren Coleman said: “It is great to be recognising and rewarding the talent that we have in the State. These guys are proud of their heritage and what they represent, and I am excited to be working with them all,” Coleman said.

His counterpart at Sydney, Chris Whitaker, agrees.

“We have picked players who have performed really well in Shute Shield this year and this is another opportunity for them to perform on a national stage. As I have said before, the NRC is an intense nine-week programme and a chance for players and coaches to step up and embrace the challenge,” Whitaker said.

The coaches said the selection criteria was simple, ensuring that the talent within in the State was equally spread across both teams while fulfilling the goal of seeing as many regional born or raised players in the NSW Country team colours, or players who have represented Country previously.

Sydney will be captained by NSW Waratahs hooker Damien Fitzpatrick while the man from Tamworth, Paddy Ryan, will lead NSW Country.

Fitzpatrick said the prospect of reigniting the City v Country rivalry will be one of the highlights of the NRC this year when Sydney and NSW Country play a blockbuster derby at Leichhardt Oval on 19 September.

“It’s definitely worth putting on the calendar. While there are plenty of guys who know each other well, we are passionate about who we are playing for and why we are playing. That game has also brought on fierce rivalry,” Fitzpatrick said.

Ryan agreed: “It’s a great opportunity to get out and support Wednesday night rugby.”

NSW Country features some familiar names and young players who have featured strongly in Shute Shield this year, including Sydney University centre Will McDonald.

The 22-year-old from Narrabri in the north west of the State made his NSW debut in June when he was included in the NSW Waratahs squad for an international exhibition match against Japanese side NEC Green Rockets in Tokyo.

Up front, lock Patrick Tafa will be looking to take the next step in his young career. The 19-year-old was one of nine NSW players in the Australian Under 20s side and one of the State’s up-and coming Generation Blue players.

Meanwhile, Sydney boasts John Folau, the younger brother of NSW Waratahs fullback Israel Folau.

Lining up alongside him will be Curtis Rona, who played 18 games for the NSW Waratahs this year and a player pushing for Wallabies selection.

Sydney kick off their NRC campaign against Canberra Vikings at Concord Oval on Saturday 8 September. The match kicks off at 1500 and will be televised live on FoxSports.

The next day, NSW Country get their 2018 campaign underway against the Western Force in Perth at 1500 (AEST time). The game will be streamed live on FoxSports.




Squads

NSW Country

 

First name

Surname

Shute Shield Club

Position

Patrick

Ryan

Sydney University

Prop, Captain

Charlie

Abel

Manly

Hooker

Nick

Champion de Crespigny

Sydney University

Looseforward

Matt

Gibbon

Southern Districts

Prop

Alex

Gibbon

Brothers QLD

Winger

Denny

Godinet

Southern Districts

Centre

Jake

Gordon

Sydney University

Halfback

Jaline

Graham

Parramatta

Outside back

Jack

Grant

Eastern Suburbs

Halfback

Jed

Holloway

Southern Districts

Lock / No.8

Tom

Horton

Sydney University

Hooker

Alex

Humfrey

Manly

Lock / Looseforward

Harry

Johnson-Holmes

Sydney University

Prop

Robert

Lagudi

Eastwood

Prop

Apolosi

Latunipulu

Southern Districts

Centre

Mack

Mason

Eastern Suburbs

Flyhalf

William

McDonnell

Sydney University

Centre

Emmanuel

Meafou

Warringah

Lock

Will

Miller

Northern Suburbs

Flanker

Alex

Newsome

Eastern Suburbs

Centre / Fullback

Rohan

Saifoloi

Southern Districts

Flyhalf

Angus

Sinclair

Northern Suburbs

Flyhalf

Mick

Snowden

Eastwood

Halfback

Tom

Staniforth

Eastern Suburbs

Lock

Rory

Suttor

Sydney University

Flanker

Patrick

Tafa

Northern Suburbs

Looseforward / Lock

Christopher

Talakai

Sydney University

Prop

Sam

Thomson

Warringah

Lock / Looseforward

Mahe

Vailanu

Warringah

Hooker/Flanker

Cody

Walker

Sydney University

Prop

Samuel

Ward

Warringah

No.8

Sebastian

Wileman

Warringah

Centre / Wing

Brad

Wilkin

Sydney University

Flanker

 

 Sydney

 

First name

Surname

Shute Shield Club

Position

Damien

Fitzpatrick

Eastwood

Hooker, captain

Cameron

Betham

Randwick

Prop

Harry

Burey

Northern Suburbs

Centre

Cam

Clark

Northern Suburbs

Wing / Fullback

Tim

Clements

Sydney University

Wing / Fullback

Tyson

Davis

Warringah

Utility back

Jack

Dempsey

Gordon

Looseforward

Nick

Duffy

Northern Suburbs

Scrumhalf

John

Folau

N/A

Centre / Wing

Pama

Fou

Eastwood

Wing / Centre

Will

Harrison

Randwick

Flyhalf

Maclean

Jones

Warringah

Looseforward

Josh

Kemeny

Sydney University

Flanker

Latu

Latunipulu

Randwick

Centre / Wing

Ryan

McCauley

Eastern Suburbs

Lock

Enoka

Muliufi

West Harbour

Centre

Rory

O’Connor

Warringah

Prop

Nick

Palmer

Northern Suburbs

Lock

Guy

Porter

Sydney University

Wing

Kiernan

Rabie

Randwick

Prop

Curtis

Rona

Parramatta

Wing / centre

Matt

Sandell

Sydney University

Prop

JP

Sauni

Northern Suburbs

Hooker

Mitch

Short

Randwick

Scrumhalf

Pat

Sio

Eastwood

No 8

Hugh

Sinclair

Northern Suburbs

Lock / Looseforward

Theo

Strang

Sydney University

Scrumhalf

Lachlan

Swinton

Sydney University

Lock / Looseforward

David

Vea

Randwick

Hooker

Connor

Vest

NorthernSuburbs

Lock / Looseforward

Shambeckler

Vui

Southern Districts

Prop

Michael

Wells

NorthernSuburbs

No 8

 






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