Spirit squad charged with defending title

by Sam Phillips

Spirit coach Kevin Foote has named the 33 men charged with defending their NRC title.

Foote's squad features 15 players who helped lift the trophy last season, along with 11 players from Pindan Premier Grade.

“I think it is probably the strongest squad we have named,” Foote said.

“We had a strong squad last year but this year having so many contracted players come through plus the coaching staff is very positive for the competition and Western Australia.Marcel Brache will form part of the Spirit's title defence. Photo: Getty Images“I think the guys want to come out and go back-to-back, that is the goal and the group is very focused.

"We are going to be looking to throw the ball around and play some really attractive Western Australian rugby."

Foote spoke of his love of the NRC and the pride he takes in picking players from the local club competition.

“We have some really talented guys from the Pindan Premier Grade in the squad, those guys play for the love of the game, they play with great spirit and great heart, I think they will add a lot of value to the ‘Piggies’," Foote said.

Pek Cowan will be pivotal to the Spirit's campaign. Photo: Getty Images“I love the NRC, I love seeing everyone the kids and the families come down to ‘Fill the Hill’ and watch the Spirit.

"We love playing at McGillivray Oval and running out in the black and gold jersey, everyone takes a lot of pride in wearing the state colours.”

Adam Coleman, Dane Haylett-Petty, Richard Hardwick and Tatafu Polota-Nau are the Wallabies listed among the squad, though they may only get service out of Hardwick, given the other three are fixtures in the Wallabies 23.


Spirit squad for the NRC

Jermaine Ainsley, Nedlands/Force

Shambeckler Vui, Wanneroo/Force

Tetera Faulkner, Wanneroo/Force

Beau King, Kalamunda

Pekahou Cowan, Wests Scarborough/Force

Mees Erasmus, Palmyra/Future Force Foundation

Baxter King, Wests Scarborough

Anaru Rangi, Nedlands/Force

Sama Malolo, Wests Scarborough/Future Force Foundation

Logan Ede, Nedlands

Richard Arnold, Nedlands/Force

Matt Philip, Force

Onehunga Havili, Palmyra/Force

Ben Grant, Cottesloe/ Future Force Foundation

Kane Koteka, Wests Scarborough/Force

Angus Cottrell, Associates/Force

Isi Naisarani, Force

Ben McCalman, Force

Michael Hardwick, Associates

Michael Ruru, Nedlands/Force

Ian Prior, Force

Michael, McDonald, Palmyra/Future Force Foundation

Jono Lance, Associates/Force

Peter Grant, Cottesloe/Force

Nick Jooste, Wests Lions (ACT)/Cottesloe

Billy Meakes, Force

Marcel Brache, Perth Bayswater/Force

Sheldon Tawara, Joondalup

Curtis Rona, Palmyra/Force

Chance Peni, Palmyra/Force

James Verity-Amm, Nedlands/Force

Brendan Owen, Associates/Future Force Foundation

Clay Uyen, UWA/Force

Dane Haylett-Petty, Wallaby (Cottesloe)

Richard Hardwick, Wallaby (UWA)

Adam Coleman, Wallaby (Cottesloe)

Tatafu Polota-Nau, Wallaby