Koroibete to debut in Wallaby XV

Beth Newman Profile
by Beth Newman

Marika Koroibete will make his professional rugby union debut on Friday morning (AEDT), named to start in the Wallaby XV team to face the French Barbarians. 

The former Melbourne Storm flyer will team up with old friend Taqele Naiyaravoro on the wing for the Wallaby XV, something that will make his rugby return even more special.

“I’ve just been learning my roles and just do whatever the coach tells me to do on the field and do some line work after training,” he said. 

“I didn’t believe that I’m going to play alongside him again, got some good memories together, he’s one of my good mates.

“It’s a dream come true and hopefully we contribute to the team tomorrow.”

Lock Will Skelton will captain the side, his first experience in that leadership role in his career but one that he will cherish.

“It’s a baptism of fire being my first role as captain, I’m excited but I think I’ll bring my own unique taste to it and lead by example,” he said.

Skelton said he wouldn’t be trying to take over proceedings as captain, with a number of ex-Test players coming into the side.

“I think there’s a wealth of knowledge and experience in the team already so for me, it’s just trying to do my role and letting the boys know that I do believe in them,” he said.

Former Waratah Harry Clunies-Ross has been included as 24th man, coming in from Lyon for the match.

Coach Scott Wisemantel said every player would be out to impress in Bordeaux.

“It’s great opportunity for all the lads in the team to get out and impress against a very experienced French Barbarians side,” he said.

“We have a good mix of youth and experience in our team which will be important as the French have some renowned Internationals and aren’t taking this game lightly.

“A lot of guys have been training in the Wallabies system for the past month on tour and now we have had a great week gelling together in Bordeaux."

The Wallaby XV take on the French Barbarians in Bordeaux on Friday morning, kicking off at 6:45am AEDT, with the game live streamed exclusively on rugby.com.au


Wallaby XV team to play French Barabarians

1. Paddy Ryan (NSW Waratahs)

2. Nathan Charles (Clermont)

3. Tom Robertson (NSW Waratahs)

4. Will Skelton (c) (NSW Waratahs)

5. Sam Carter (ACT Brumbies)

6. Peter Kimlin (Grenoble)

7. Jack Dempsey (NSW Waratahs)

8. Ben Mowen (Pau)

9. Nick Frisby (Queensland Reds)

10. Jono Lance (vc) (Western Force)

11. Taqele Naiyaravoro (NSW Waratahs)

12. Kyle Godwin (ACT Brumbies)

13. Mark Gerrard (Toyota Industries Shuttles)

14. Marika Koroibete (Melbourne Rebels)

15. Luke Morahan (Western Force)


16. Andrew Ready (Queensland Reds)

17. Sef Fa'agase (Queensland Reds)

18. David Lolohea (Western Sydney Rams)

19. Scott Fardy (ACT Brumbies)

20. Henry Vanderglas (Grenoble)

21. Nic Stirzaker (Melbourne Rebels)

22. Izaia Perese (Queensland Reds)

23. Andrew Kellaway (NSW Waratahs)

24th Man: Henry Clunies-Ross (Lyon)