Australian Under 20s announce squad for Junior World Champs

by Staff Writer

The Australian Under 20s squad will include seven players with Super Rugby experience when they head to the IRB Junior World Championships in Auckland next month.

The 28-man squad includes Allan Alaalatoa and Tom Staniforth of the University of Canberra Brumbies; Lalakai Foketi and Sean McMahon of the RaboDirect Melbourne Rebels; David Horwitz of the NSW Waratahs; Luke Burton of the Western Force and Jonah Placid of the St.George Queensland Reds.

The squad was named after a 13-day training camp at Bond University on the Gold Coast, which included two matches against the Samoan Under 20s. Australia was successful in both of these clashes recording two strong wins (36-5 and 60-5).

Australian Under 20s Head Coach Adrian Thompson conceded that the final selection decision was difficult.

“We had a very strong squad this year that worked really hard to ensure the best outcome for themselves and for the team.”

“I am very happy with the squad we have selected and I am confident this side will be a real force in Auckland as we look to win the IRB Junior World Championship.”

If the Under 20s are successful it would be the first time Australia would have won the tournament.

Melbourne Rebels Forward Sean McMahon has been rewarded with the captaincy of the squad following recent strong performances with the Qantas Australian Sevens side and the Melbourne Rebels. Lalakai Foketi and Tom Staniforth have been named as vice captains.

“Sean is an excellent Rugby player and an inspiring leader”, Thompson said.

“He encompasses the values of Australian Rugby and will lead our side on and off the field with great distinction. He has really developed his breakdown and defensive skills at the Rebels”.

Australia will have the honour of playing the first match of the IRB Junior World Championship when they take on Argentina at ECOLight Stadium, Pukekohe on Monday 2 June. This will be followed by matches against England on 6 June, and Italy on 10 June as the four sides battle to top Pool A.

National Under 20s Squad for IRB Junior World Championship:

Name

State

Club

Allan Alaalatoa

ACT

Uni Norths

Luke Burton

WA

UWA

Sam Croke

NSW

Norths

Jack Dempsey

NSW

Gordon

Lolo Fakaosilea

QLD

Sunnybank

Lalakai Foketi (vc)

VIC

Boxhill

Ross Haylett-Petty

WA

Cottesloe

David Horwitz

NSW

Randwick

Alifeleti Kaitu'u

NSW

Southern Districts

Andrew Kellaway

NSW

Randwick

Brad Lacey

WA

West Scarborough

Jake McIntyre

QLD

Sunnybank

Sean McMahon (c)

VIC

Endeavour Hills

Rory O’Connor

NSW

Manly

Cameron Orr

NSW

West Harbour

Jack Payne

QLD

Brothers

Rowan Perry

ACT

Vikings

Matthew Philip

NSW

Manly

Jonah Placid

QLD

Easts

Joseph Powell

ACT

Vikings

Angus Pulver

NSW

Sydney University

Tom Robertson

NSW

Sydney University

Andrew Robinson

ACT

Vikings

Harry Scoble

WA

UWA

Tom Staniforth (vc)

ACT

Royals

Jim Stewart

NSW

Sydney University

Jonny Vaux

NSW

Sydney University

Tevita Vea

NSW

Randwick

The Under 20s will have a nine-day Junior World Championship assembly camp at the Sydney Academy of Sport in Narrabeen from Friday 20 May.

Australian National Under 20s IRB Junior World Championship Schedule:

Date

Opponent

Location

Time

June 2

Argentina

ECOLight Stadium, Pukekohe

11:35 AEST

June 6

England

QBE Stadium Auckland

15:35 AEST

June 10

Italy

ECOLight Stadium, Pukekohe

13:35 AEST

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