Wellington name 41-man squad with Flutey and Woodward
Ricoh Wellington Lions head coach Chris Boyd is continuing his preference to fill the region’s ITM Cup team with homegrown talent, today naming a 41-man extended squad packed with local players.
Former Lions Riki Flutey and Jason Woodward slot back into the squad alongside a chunk of returning players, as well as those who have been consistent during the Wellington club rugby season.
“We’ve got most of our forward pack back, so we’ve got some experience up front, but we’ve obviously had some departures in the backline which made it necessary for us to promote some of the youth from inside Wellington,” said Boyd.
“It’s crucial for our young players to have the confidence that if they’re performing well in their club environments, they’ll then get a chance to be selected for the Lions.”
The extended squad have their first hit-out of the season against Manawatu on Friday, August 1, at Hutt Rec, which Boyd said would help the coaching staff further refine their squad for the 2014 ITM Cup.
The final squad will be named prior to the team’s first match of the season against Waikato at Westpac Stadium on August 16.
This week’s pre-season match kicks off at 3pm, and will cost a gold coin to enter. Kids under 14 years old have free entry, as do Ricoh Wellington Lions season members.
The extended Ricoh Wellington Lions squad is;
FORWARDS: Motu Matu’u, Mark Reddish, Ardie Savea (Oriental Rongotai), Dane Coles, Reggie Goodes (Poneke), Tolu Fahamokioa, Taniela Koroi, Kaipati Gaualofa (Tawa), Victor Vito, Jeffery Toomaga-Allen (Marist St Pat’s), Eric Sione, Api Naikatini, John Schwalger (Northern United), Jeremy Thrush, James O’Reilly (Hutt Old Boys’ Marist), Christian Lloyd (Upper Hutt Rams), Brad Shields, Ross Filipo (Petone),Vaea Fifita (Wellington), Adam Hill (Old Boys’ University).
BACKS: TJ Perenara, Jackson Garden Bachop (Northern United), Frae Wilson, Tau Mamea (Wainuiomata), Jared Kahu, Riki Flutey, Belgium Tuatagaloa, Sam McNicol (Petone), Ma’a Nonu, Afa Fa’atau, Ambrose Curtis, Matt Proctor, Julian Savea (Oriental Rongotai), Shaun Treeby (Tawa), Ope Peleseuma, Parataiso Siliafai-Leaana (Hutt Old Boys’ Marist), Conrad Smith, Wes Goosen, Matt O’Connor (Old Boys’ University), Cory Jane, Jason Woodward (Upper Hutt Rams).