Kerevi in mix for NRC opener

The Rugby Championship
Beth Newman Profile
by Beth Newman

Samu Kerevi is set to line up in what will be a stacked Brisbane City backline this weekend at Ballymore.

The Wallabies centre is one of 12 Test squad players who have been released for the opening round of the NRC, in a bid to add to their game time.

Kerevi started at 13 in the opening Bledisloe Test, but was left out of the team in Dunedin after a disappointing performance, with Wallabies coach Michael Cheika saying the 23-year-old was yet to return to full fitness after an injury-affected season.

The Queensland Red is no stranger to the NRC, having played for Brisbane City in 2014 and 2015, when they won back-to-back titles.

Brisbane City already boast Nick Frisby and Quade Cooper as their halves and Kerevi's return only makes their attack look more threatening, against the Fiji Drua on Saturday.

Loose forward Adam Korczyk and lock Kane Douglas will also be released to play for City.

Last weekend's Test debutant Izack Rodda could feature for Queensland Country, along with speedster Izaia Perese, with the pair heading back to the provincial competition on Saturday.


They could find themselves up against Brumbies halfback and third-choice Wallabies nine Joe Powell, who will be in the mix for the Vikings.

Sunday's Perth Spirit vs Melbourne Rising game could see as many as six Wallabies squad players in action, with Tetera Faulkner, Curtis Rona and Billy Meakes in the Spirit side, while Jordan Uelese, Lopeti Timani and Marika Koroibete will be in contention for the Rising.

The Wallabies have all returned to their home states this week, before they reconvene in Perth on Sunday evening, ahead of a September 9 clash with South Africa.

Australia takes on South Africa at nib Stadium on Saturday September 9, kicking off at 6pm AWST, 8pm AEST, LIVE on FOX SPORTS and via RUGBY.com.au RADIO. Buy tickets here.

SQUAD

Players released for NRC round one

Brisbane City vs Fijian Drua, Saturday September 2, Ballymore Stadium, Brisbane

Kane Douglas 

Samu Kerevi

Adam Korczyk

Canberra Vikings vs Queensland Country, Saturday 2 September, Viking Park, Canberra

Vikings

Joe Powell

Queensland Country 

Izaia Perese 

Izack Rodda

Perth Spirit vs Melbourne Rising, Sunday 3 September, McGillivray Oval, Perth

Spirit 

Tetera Faulkner

Billy Meakes

Curtis Rona


Rising 

Marika Koroibete

Lopeti Timani

Jordan Uelese

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