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Pacific Tests - June 25th


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Fiji Squad:
Tui Kamikamica (Melbourne Storm)
Vuate Karawalevu (Sydney Roosters)
Viliame Kikau (Penrith Panthers)
Issac Lumelume (Canterbury Bulldogs
Iosefo Masi (North Queensland Cowboys)
Taane Milne (South Sydney Rabbitohs)
Laitia Moceidreke (North QueenslandCowboys)
Kevin Naiqama (Sydney Roosters)
Mikaele Ravalawa (St George Illawarra Dragons)
Taniela Sadrugu (North QueenslandCowboys)
Maika Sivo (Parramatta Eels)
Penioni Tagituimua (Canterbury Bulldogs)
Sunia Turuva (Penrith Panthers)
Semi Valemei (Canberra Raiders)
Brandon Wakeham (Canterbury Bulldogs)
Mesake Kurititoga (Nadera Panthers)
Lamar Liolevave (Tweed Seagulls)
Netane Masima (West Magpies)
Keylen Miller (Mounties)
Tikiko Noke (Parkes Spacemen)
Waqasaqa Qiolevu (Yasawa Saints)
Nasoki Ralulu (Bomballa Blue Heelers)
Joseva Rasiga (Parkes Spacemen)
Joseph Ratu (Tweed Seagulls)
Ethan Robinson Pio Seci (Avignon)
Pio Sokobalavu (Mounties)
Maika Tudravu (Sarina Crocs)
Marika Turagaiviu (USP Raiders)
Ratu Inoke Vasuturaga (Kinoya Eagles

A few notable omissions there, Koroisau, RCG, Sims and the Saifiti brothers not unexpected but also missing Waqa Blake & Marcelo Montoya from NRL level and all of their Super League players. I assume most of the names at the bottom are there for the experience with several NSW & QLD Cup players missing out.

Also interesting Naiqama being named captain again when arguably there are better options across the backline.

Edited by jim_57
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Samoa

1. Jamayne Isaako 2. Taylan May 3. Izack Tago 4. Marion Seve 5. Greg Marzhew 6. Josh Schuster 7. Anthony Milford 8. Bunty Afoa 9. Jazz Tevaga 10. Spencer Leniu 11. Luciano Leilua 12. Jaydn Su'A 13. Martin Taupau 14. Chanel Harris-Tavita 15. Josh Aloiai 16. Josh McGuire 17. Franklin Pele 18. Daejarn Asi

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PNG

Numbers don’t match after Lam.

1. Alex Johnston 2. Robert Derby 3. David Mead 4. Justin Olam 5. Terry Wapi 6. Lachlan Lam 7. Epel Kapinias 8. Wartovo Puara 9. Sylvester Namo 10. Nixon Putt 11. Daniel Russell 12. Liam Horne 13. Kyle Laybutt 14. Emmanuel Waine 15. McKenzie Yei 16. Jacob Alick 17. Dilbert Issac 18. Sherwin Tenabi 19. Cruise Ten
 

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13 hours ago, Pulga said:

A full strength Fiji is going to be a handful. 

They would worry any team if they had a blinder

Agreed. A bit light on spine players for this test but for the World Cup they could have something like:

1. Turuva/Any of their wingers who can play a bit of fullback.
6. Lovodua
7. Wakeham
9. Koroisau

With a strong forward pack potentially featuring Kikau, Kamikamika,  Sims, Saifiti x 2, Nakubuwai, Evans, Vuniyayawa. Plus a backline with not only wingers but players like Milne, Blake & Valemei who’ve all played a fair bit of centre this year. 

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1 hour ago, jim_57 said:

Talakai and Tupou selected in NSW squad. Staggs dropped and available for Tonga.

Sims & RCG left out for NSW, could potentially be available for Fiji.

Staggs at 5/8 is probably more important for Tonga than Talakai in the centres though it's disappointing not to see him debut.

Will Penisini into the centres and Christian Tuipulotu/Starford To'a onto the wing is still a decent backline, also one that could begin solidifying the future of Tonga.

 

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1 hour ago, jim_57 said:

Talakai and Tupou selected in NSW squad. Staggs dropped and available for Tonga.

Sims & RCG left out for NSW, could potentially be available for Fiji.

Whilst its good news they are available it's sad the international game is in this position.

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29 minutes ago, Damien said:

Whilst its good news they are available it's sad the international game is in this position.

Neither RCG, Sims or Staggs will probably turn out this weekend as if you play for a country you have to stick with them for a calendar year. That means you could not play for Australia in the RLWC.

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44 minutes ago, Scubby said:

Neither RCG, Sims or Staggs will probably turn out this weekend as if you play for a country you have to stick with them for a calendar year. That means you could not play for Australia in the RLWC.

I was unaware of that rule, I thought players could switch a tier 1 and tier 2 without restriction, just not within the same tournament.

Even so I’d say Sims would be a low chance of making the Aus squad and Staggs not much better so they may both play. RCG I’m less confident, very surprised Fittler dropped him and he wasn’t named in Fiji’s extended squad for the World Cup so he may have told them he’s not interested or they haven’t bothered after he pulled out a few years ago.

Edited by jim_57
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7 minutes ago, jim_57 said:

I was unaware of that rule, I thought players could switch a tier 1 and tier 2 without restriction, just not within the same tournament.

Even so I’d say Sims would be a low chance of making the Aus squad and Staggs not much better so they may both play. RCG I’m less confident.

It is a new rule just brought in recently I believe.

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52 minutes ago, Scubby said:

Neither RCG, Sims or Staggs will probably turn out this weekend as if you play for a country you have to stick with them for a calendar year. That means you could not play for Australia in the RLWC.

Unless they aren't going to choose Australia anyway.

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15 minutes ago, jim_57 said:

I was unaware of that rule, I thought players could switch a tier 1 and tier 2 without restriction, just not within the same tournament.

Even so I’d say Sims would be a low chance of making the Aus squad and Staggs not much better so they may both play. RCG I’m less confident, very surprised Fittler dropped him and he wasn’t named in Fiji’s extended squad for the World Cup so he may have told them he’s not interested or they haven’t bothered after he pulled out a few years ago.

The rules are here:

The key points are:

  • Eligibility to represent a nation is based upon the birthplace of the player, the birthplace of any parent or grandparent, or residency over a five-year period.
  • A player can only elect to represent one nation in any calendar year
  • ‘Electing’ to represent a country has changed from playing for that country to being named in a 19-man squad (or final tournament squad in a sanctioned 9s competition) for that country.
  • A player eligible for any nations other than Australia, England, New Zealand can only make one switch between those nations in a four-year period. Players qualified for Australia, England and New Zealand plus any other nation can make multiple switches however they can only elect to represent one nation in any calendar year.
  • Players can only represent one of Australia, England or New Zealand in a career, even if eligible for more than one of those nations. If eligible they can play for nations outside of those three.
  • Players cannot represent Australia or New Zealand if they have elected to represent Great Britain and vice versa.
  • No player can play for more than one country in any recognised global event.

https://www.loverugbyleague.com/post/international-rugby-leagues-eligibility-rules-updated/

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9 minutes ago, Damien said:

Unless they aren't going to choose Australia anyway.

Well they have Mal in one ear and Freddie Fittler in the other so this often results in them standing aside and not playing at all - even if it means they never make the Australian team. Like it or not, those that get favoured for Origin have kept quiet about Australia v Island Nation.

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29 minutes ago, Damien said:

Unless they aren't going to choose Australia anyway.


This will get interesting at the end of the year. A lot of players will know they can play Origin and then pick another team for the World Cup. They may keep that close to their chests because it could potentially affect their Origin selection chances depending on the Coach’s’ attitudes.

Roughly 50% of Origin game 1 players were eligible for tier 2 nations.

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29 minutes ago, jim_57 said:


This will get interesting at the end of the year. A lot of players will know they can play Origin and then pick another team for the World Cup. They may keep that close to their chests because it could potentially affect their Origin selection chances depending on the Coach’s’ attitudes.

Roughly 50% of Origin game 1 players were eligible for tier 2 nations.

I actually don't think the Origin coaches give a damn if players pick Australia or not, they just want to win the series with the best players they can pick.

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16 minutes ago, Damien said:

I actually don't think the Origin coaches give a damn if players pick Australia or not, they just want to win the series with the best players they can pick.

Mal is wanting everyone to declare now so he can only pick people in the wider squads who want to represent Australia.

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Cook Islands squad lacks depth and a bit of quality in the halves, they could (but equally wouldn’t surprise me if they didn’t given Samoa’s reputation) get a bit of a hiding against Samoa.

  • Tinirau Arona (Wakefield)
  • Geoff Daniela (St Marys)
  • Anthony Gelling (NZ)
  • Kayal Iro (Newtown Jets)
  • Andre Iro (Southport Tigers)
  • Reece Joyce (NZ)
  • Makahesi Makatoa (Eels)
  • Steven Marsters (Thirroul Butchers)
  • Esan Marsters (Titans)
  • Davvy Moale (Rabbitohs)
  • Malachi Morgan (Southport Tigers)
  • Moses Noovao-McGreal (Norths Devils)
  • Pride Pettersen-Robati (Warriors)
  • Brendan Piakura (Broncos)
  • Reuben Porter (Tweed Heads)
  • Reuben Rennie (Newtown Jets)
  • Vincent Rennie (Newtown Jets)
  • Brodie Tamarua (NZ)
  • Aaron Teroi (Central Queensland Capras)
  • Xavier Willison (Broncos)
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5 hours ago, welshmagpie said:

Cook Islands squad lacks depth and a bit of quality in the halves, they could (but equally wouldn’t surprise me if they didn’t given Samoa’s reputation) get a bit of a hiding against Samoa.

  • Tinirau Arona (Wakefield)
  • Geoff Daniela (St Marys)
  • Anthony Gelling (NZ)
  • Kayal Iro (Newtown Jets)
  • Andre Iro (Southport Tigers)
  • Reece Joyce (NZ)
  • Makahesi Makatoa (Eels)
  • Steven Marsters (Thirroul Butchers)
  • Esan Marsters (Titans)
  • Davvy Moale (Rabbitohs)
  • Malachi Morgan (Southport Tigers)
  • Moses Noovao-McGreal (Norths Devils)
  • Pride Pettersen-Robati (Warriors)
  • Brendan Piakura (Broncos)
  • Reuben Porter (Tweed Heads)
  • Reuben Rennie (Newtown Jets)
  • Vincent Rennie (Newtown Jets)
  • Brodie Tamarua (NZ)
  • Aaron Teroi (Central Queensland Capras)
  • Xavier Willison (Broncos)

Yeah their depth can't really afford them losing commits, Francis Molo swapping to Samoa is a decent blow as a result.

They should draw plenty from SL for the WC so their best 17 will be alright but there's a few lower graders missing from this list already.

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