Super Rugby


8/1/2014

Queensland Country NRC squad announced


Bond University Queensland Country’s 35-man squad has been announced for the inaugural season of the Buildcorp National Rugby Championship (NRC) and will be captained by St.George Queensland Reds centre Anthony Fainga’a. 

The announcement was made prior to the official launch of Bond University as the naming-rights partner of Queensland Country.

The NRC, which begins on August 21, is a new domestic Rugby competition, involving nine teams from across Australia. The inaugural season will run August to November and will provide another link in players’ development pathway towards Super Rugby and ultimately Wallabies selection. 

Queensland Rugby is fielding two teams in the competition – Brisbane City and Queensland Country – with Reds players split between the two squads. Players were chosen for either City or Country based on their existing player pathway and high performance discretion, to ensure an even split between the two sides.

17 players within the Queensland Country squad where either born or brought up in Country Queensland or have passed through the Queensland Country pathway on their way to selection in this squad. 

12 capped Queensland Reds players have been named in the 35-man squad including Anthony Fainga’a, who was recently the vice-captain of the Reds in their Super Rugby clash against the Melbourne Rebels. The other Reds include Anthony’s twin brother Saia, Blake Enever, Scott Gale, Mike Harris, Greg Holmes, Sam Johnson, Ben Lucas, Beau Robinson and Jamie-Jerry Taulagi, as well as current Wallabies Rob Simmons and James Slipper. 

The team will be coached by Queensland Reds attack coach Steve Meehan, and he will be joined by assistant coaches Peter Wilkins (Reds Wider Training Squad coach), Garrick Morgan (Queensland Country Heelers) and Tim Sampson (Reds A, Easts). 

“The team selected has a good balance of Reds players, Reds Wider Training Squad members and some of the best talent from club Rugby,” Meehan said. 

“Anthony already has leadership experience as a senior member of the Reds squad and will captain the team.

“The growth and development of the players who have joined the squad from Premier Rugby clubs will no doubt be enhanced by having 12 capped Reds to contribute to their development as Rugby players. 

“The NRC will act as an addition to the already existing Queensland Rugby pathway which will help us further nurture and develop Queensland talent, exposing them to the pressure and demands of a professional Rugby program.”

The Country squad features a number of Australia’s brightest up-and-coming players including Reds and Australian Under-20s representatives Jack Payne (Brothers) and Lolo Fakaosilea (Sunnybank). 

GPS and Reds Under-20s backs James Tuttle (18) and Campbell Magnay (17) are the youngest two players in the squad. 

Players who have performed well in Queensland Premier Rugby have also been rewarded, and outside backs Giles Beveridge (Brothers) and Tom Pincus (University of Queensland), who were the leading try scorer and overall point scorer respectively, have both been named in the Country squad. 

“I’m looking forward to working with players who have been selected from club Rugby,” Meehan said. 

“Selection in the Queensland Country squad could potentially launch the careers of developing players, it is for them to take advantage of the opportunity.” 

Queensland Country will have a bye in the first round of NRC and will begin their campaign on Saturday August 30, against the NSW Country Eagles at Bond University. 

For a full list of Queensland Country’s NRC fixtures go to http://bit.ly/1yLRCWm

For tickets and hospitality packages go to http://bit.ly/1rPoaeS   

Bond University Queensland Country Squad

For full player profiles follow this link: http://www.redsrugby.com.au/NRC  

*Wallabies allocated player

NAME

DOB

CLUB

PROPS

Fred Burke

23/5/1989 (25)

GPS

Haydn Hirsimaki

2/5/1998 (26)

Sunnybank

Greg Holmes

6/11/1983 (30)

Reds/Sunnybank

Kirwan Sanday

13/2/1991 (23)

Easts

James Slipper*

6/6/1989 (25)

Reds/Bond University

HOOKERS

Saia Fainga’a

2/2/1987 (27)

Reds/GPS

Ryan Freney

8/9/1987 (26)

GPS

Tonga Ma’afu

20/3/1992 (22)

Norths

LOCKS

Cameron Bracewell

21/3/1988 (26)

Bond University

Blake Enever

12/10/1991 (22)

Reds/Easts

Sam Fattal

14/1/1994 (20)

Easts

Rubin Fuimaono

9/11/1980 (33)

Bond University

Jack Payne

13/9/1994 (19)

Brothers

Rob Simmons*

19/4/1989 (25)

Reds/Sunnybank

BACKROW

Ben Adams

23/4/1990 (24)

Sunnybank

Jack de Guingand

6/11/1991 (22)

University of Queensland

Lolo Fakasilea

10/6/1995 (19)

Sunnybank

Mitch King

30/8/1990 (23)

GPS

Beau Robinson

13/8/1986 (27)

Reds/Souths

James Turner

25/3/1988 (26)

Souths

HALFBACKS

Scott Gale

24/10/1994 (20)

Reds WTS/University of Queensland

Sam Grasso

2/6/1991 (23)

GPS

FLYHALVES

Mike Harris

8/7/1988 (25)

Reds/University of Queensland

James Tuttle

13/5/1996 (18)

GPS

CENTRES

Anthony Fainga’a

2/2/1987 (27)

Reds/GPS

Sam Johnson

19/6/1993 (21)

Reds WTS/GPS

Clynton Knox

27/12/1992 (21)

Brothers

Campbell Magnay

10/11/1996 (17)

GPS

Uarotafu Setu

22/2/1987 (27)

University of Queensland

OUTSIDE BACKS

Giles Beveridge

2/7/1994 (20)

Brothers

Pierce Fitzgerald

24/8/1992 (21)

Brothers

Ben Lucas

30/12/1987 (26)

Reds/Sunnybank

Tom Pincus

28/5/1992 (22)

University of Queensland

Jamie-Jerry Taulagi

18/6/1993 (21)

Reds/University of Queensland

Todd Winkley

5/3/1991 (23)

GPS