2012 Extended Playing Squad announced 30/09/2011 By HSBC Waratahs Media Unit The HSBC Waratahs are one step away from finalising their 2012 Super Rugby roster following today’s confirmation of the five players who will form the Extended Playing Squad. Each Australian Super Rugby team will have a core squad of 30 players with an additional five players forming their EPS. The five players who will join the HSBC Waratahs EPS are former Western Force backrower Tevita Metuisela, former Blues scrumhalf Grayson Hart, backrower Lopeti Timani, prop Lotu Taukeiaho and outside back Nathan Trist. In an ongoing commitment to foster, promote and harvest Rugby talent in NSW, all five players have been specifically selected from Sydney’s Premier Rugby competition, the Shute Shield. There is one player still to be added to the 2012 Super Rugby squad. HSBC Waratahs head coach Michael Foley said the nature of the Super Rugby competition means that all teams are forced to call on players outside the main squad and that the 2012 EPS will provide that depth. “Our 2011 season clearly showed how injuries can have you looking quite quickly at your Academy or the club ranks to bring in players who you need to perform at Super Rugby level,” said Foley. “Now that the Australian Rugby Union has taken over the Academies at a national level it has allowed all the states to bring in some more players in addition to the 30-man squad and we know those players will play a part at some stage next year. “We’re expecting the players in the EPS to develop as footballers, but we also need them to be training with the main squad week in, week out, so that when they are required they can slide straight in and be ready to play Super Rugby.” Sydney University winger Trist, a qualified physiotherapist who is currently studying medicine, said he is thrilled by the opportunity to join the HSBC Waratahs and the prospect of playing in the world’s premier provincial Rugby competition. “I couldn’t be more excited to have the chance to possibly play Super Rugby in 2012,” said Trist. “I’ve had a great run in club Rugby in my career and been lucky enough to make a few rep teams, but I never gave up the dream of playing for the HSBC Waratahs. “The club season only finished last Saturday but I’m already pumped to start pre-season... bring it on!" The EPS system is being introduced for the first time in 2012 and will allow each Super Rugby team to have five additional players who will train full time with the 30-man squad, but will only be available for selection if the main squad is affected by injury. The 25 EPS players across the country are funded by the ARU and the EPS system has been introduced to achieve a greater spread of playing talent through the lever of playing opportunity. Players in the extended squads are able to move between teams in order to take up a position in the core playing squad of another Super Rugby side. 2012 HSBC WARATAHS Super Rugby Squad Chris Alcock, Adam Ashley-Cooper, Berrick Barnes, Tom Carter, Dave Dennis, Kane Douglas, Rocky Elsom, Damien Fitzpatrick, Bernard Foley, Daniel Halangahu, Rob Horne, Brackin Karauria-Henry, Sekope Kepu, Tom Kingston, Pat McCutcheon, Brendan McKibbin, Drew Mitchell, Dean Mumm, Atieli Pakalani, Wycliff Palu, Greg Peterson, Tatafu Polota-Nau, Sarel Pretorius, Benn Robinson, Paddy Ryan, Jeremy Tilse, Lachie Turner, John Ulugia, Dan Vickerman (plus one to be added). Extended Playing Squad TEVITA METUISELA Born: 16 October 1983, Manly NSW Physical: 186cm, 107kg Position: Loose Forward School: Narrabeen Sports High School Junior Club: Manly Roos Club: Manly Provincial Caps: 7 [Western Force 7] Provincial Points: 0 Provincial Debut: 2011 v Sharks [Western Force] Super Rugby Caps: 7 [Western Force 7] Super Rugby Points: 0 Super Rugby Debut: 2011 v Sharks [Western Force] Test Caps: 0 Rep Honours: Sydney Roosters (NRL), Melbourne Storm (NRL), Wests Tigers (NRL), Brumbies Academy, Western Force Metuisela was selected for Australian Schools out of Narrabeen Sports High School however did not tour after taking up an NRL contract with the Sydney Roosters. The backrower made first grade appearances with the Roosters, Melbourne Storm and Wests Tigers before heading back to Rugby. The 28-year-old’s form for Manly earned him a start with the Brumbies Academy before he made his Super Rugby debut with the Western Force this year. GRAYSON HART Born: 19 June 1988, Kaitaia NZL Physical: 185cm, 92kg Position: Scrumhalf School: Mt Roskill Grammar School Junior Club: Grammar Carlton Club: Southern Districts Provincial Caps: 31 [Auckland 25, North Harbour 6] Provincial Points: 10 [Auckland 10 (2t)] Provincial Debut: 2007 v Bay of Plenty [Auckland] Super Rugby Caps: 7 [Blues 7] Super Rugby Points: 0 Super Rugby Debut: 2009 v Bulls [Blues] Test Caps: 0 Rep Honours: New Zealand U19, New Zealand U20, Auckland NPC, North Harbour NPC, Blues Grayson Hart, the nephew of former All Blacks coach John, has played the last two years in the Shute Shield after making a name for himself in New Zealand. Hart is a former national rep at U19 and U20 level and made his NPC debut at just 19 years of age for Auckland in 2007. He went on to play Super Rugby for the Blues before heading to Sydney, and qualifies as an Australian through his paternal grandmother. LOPETI TIMANI Born: 28 September 1993, Navutoka TON Physical: 193cm, 117kg Position: Lock, Backrow School: Tonga College ‘Atele TON Junior Club: Silapelu’ua TON Club: Southern Districts Provincial Caps: 0 Rep Honours: Canterbury Bulldogs (NRL U20), HSBC Junior Waratahs Backrower Lopeti Timani graduates to the EPS after a season in the HSBC Junior Waratahs professional squad this year. The brother of Test forward Sitaleki, Timani has followed a similar path to the HSBC Waratahs as Rocky Elsom, with both playing representative rugby league with the Canterbury Bulldogs before coming back to Rugby. The powerful forward represented the HSBC Junior Waratahs in the 2011 IRB Pacific Rugby Cup and played alongside Hart at Southern Districts in the Shute Shield where he developed his ability to play at lock in addition to the back row. LOTU TAUKEIAHO Born: 12 May 1984, Sydney NSW Physical: 184cm, 120kg Position: Prop School: Trinity Grammar School Junior Club: Canterbury Club: Randwick Provincial Caps: 0 Rep Honours: NSW U19, Australian Barbarians, Sydney Randwick front rower Lotu Taukeiaho has been a regular fixture alongside many more well-known players in the Galloping Greens teams which qualified for the Shute Shield Grand Finals from 2008 to 2010. As well as making regular appearances for the Australian Barbarians, Taukeiaho was also selected for the Sydney representative team in 2011. NATHAN TRIST Born: 22 December 1982, Kiama NSW Physical: 188cm, 99kg Position: Outside Back School: Hursltone Agricultural High School Junior Club: Kiama Cows Club: Sydney University Provincial Caps: 0 Rep Honours: Melbourne Rebels, Brumbies Runners, Australian Universities, Australian Sevens Sydney University back Nathan Trist comes into the EPS having established himself as a regular first grader at one of Sydney’s strongest clubs. The medical student has made a habit of forcing himself into the Students’ Shute Shield XV ahead of players on Super Rugby contracts, and his selection in the 2011 Shute Shield Finals series is evidence of that. A qualified physiotherapist, Trist is now studying medicine and played for the Melbourne Rebels in the 2007 Australian Rugby Shield. In 2004 Trist set two Sydney University club records when he scored 64 points, including eight tries, in a fourth grade game against Penrith.