The Sydney Stars squad announced today features a number of big names and a couple of bolters, auguring for an exciting season for the franchise.
Perhaps the most exciting draw of the Buildcorp NRC is the revelation of prodigious talent, and a key aim of this competition is to provide young talent the opportunity to grow and develop into the next generation of top tier players. The Stars have embraced this tenet, and the squad for 2015 includes a couple of spring chickens, who will benefit immeasurably from the guidance provided by their teammates and coaching staff; many of whom have Super Rugby and International experience.
Let’s take a look at just some of the players to watch out for in 2015.
DECLAN MOORE – A key player in the Sydney Uni Colts program for the past couple of years, and playing up in Grade this year for a number of games, 19 year old Moore has displayed the maturity and fortitude of a seasoned veteran, and leapfrogs the grades to feature on the Stars roster this year, covering both hooker and flanker.
CHRISTIAN YASSMIN - Just turning 20, Yassmin has also been turning heads playing for Sydney Uni Colts with his blistering speed and ability to shrug off tackles.
THEO STRANG – This 18 year old Scots College student hasn’t even completed his HSC, yet he’s managed to barnstorm his way into the team off the back of impressive performances with Australia-A schoolboys. Contracting straight out of school is a first for the Stars and reflects the potential shown in the young half back; an exciting prospect for the future.
JEREMY TILSE – This 50-cap Waratah and loose head prop will be leading the charge in the forward pack. With shoulders the size of SUV tyres, this massive unit’s job is to provide plenty of mettle in the rough stuff.
DAVE DENNIS – Stars fans will enjoy watching one of Australia’s best this year.
PAT MCCUTCHEON - McCutcheon plays about 20kg heavier than his frame and is impossible to dent. His workrate, leadership and experience in Super Rugby will be hugely important to the fabric of this team.
TOM KINGSTON - Said to be annoyingly intelligent (infamously scoring 104 out of 100 for his HSC) Kingston will provide good technical support to backs coach Dan Parks, and possibly unsolicited advice on non-rugby matters. Kingston can cover both fullback and outside centre and will provide plenty of enterprise in the backline, drawing from his exposure from top flight rugby with the Rebels franchise.
FULL SQUAD including positional WTS members
Forwards: Jeremy Tilse, Matt Sandell, Tolu Latu, Tom Coolican, James Hanson, Tom Robertson, Patrick Ryan, Aldy King, Al Ryan, Andrew Leota, Matt Philip, Rohan O'Regan, Tipiloma Kaveninga, David Dennis, Ofa Finau, David Hickey, Jake Wainwright, Declan Moore, Patrick McCutcheon, Mitchell Whiteley, Will Skelton.
Backs: Jake Gordon, Richard Draper, Angus Roberts, Ben Hughes, Jordan McGregor, Henry Clunies-Ross, John Hale, Tom Carter, Andrew Robinson, Jim Stewart, Harry Jones, Christian Yassmin, Tom Kingston, Guy Porter, Theo Strang, Bernard Foley, Nick Phipps, Israel Folau.