Fitzpatrick front and centre for Waratahs

Brisbane Tens
by Sam Phillips

Damien Fitzpatrick will captain a Waratahs side which will open the door for several young guns at the Brisbane Tens.

Kurtley Beale and Curtis Rona are the only Wallabies named in coach Daryl Gibson's squad for the tournament outside of wildcard Drew Mitchell, leaving limitless opportunities for those on the fringe of the team's best XV.

Cam Clark will play his first game since going under the knife to repair a busted shoulder, Mack Mason is likely to play a prominent role as a playmaker and Irae Simone will lay his claim for a centre spot.

Then there is the opportunity for graduating Australian U20s reps such as Harry Johnson-Holmes, Cody Walker and Lachlan Swinton, who will play their part up front.Cam Clark will play his first game since last year's Shute Shield grand final. Photo: Getty Images"The squad for Brisbane is another opportunity for us to introduce the younger players to the fast-paced and high intensity rugby at an international level," Gibson said.

"While the type of game will be slightly different for these players, the fundamentals will still be the same."

Gibson said the Tens presents his squad with a unique challenge.

"This tournament represents a different challenge for us in so far as it’s not quite Sevens but it’s also not Fifteens as we know it.

"Last year was a learning experience for all teams because I don’t think we quite knew what to expect.

"What we learnt though was that Tens is still structured and that set piece is still important, like XVs."

The Waratahs also announced their women's squad for the competition on Tuesday, stacked with a host of Wallaroos.

NSW played exhibition Tens matches last year against Queensland and coach Nathan McMahon said the opportunity had been invaluable for his side.

"This is a massive step in the right direction for women’s rugby," he said.

"If we take a look at what happened last year, the players we took to the event went on to play in the AON Uni 7s series, for the Wallaroos in the World Cup and we had one player go on to play at the Commonwealth Youth Games and win a gold medal.

“We have a balanced team consisting of players with a XVs  background coupled with those who have represented NSW at State level and some who have played in the AON Uni 7s Series.”

The 2018 Brisbane Tens kicks off on Friday February 9, running until Saturday February 10. Buy tickets here


Waratahs squad for the Brisbane Tens

Kurtley Beale

Cam Clark

Damien Fitzpatrick (C)

Lalakai Foketi

Jake Gordon

Harry Johnson-Holmes

Maclean Jones

Tolu Latu

Mack Mason

Ryan McCauley

Kelly Meafua

Will Miller

Drew Mitchell

Taqele Naiyaravoro

Alex Newsome

Rory O’Connor

Curtis Rona

JP Sauni

Mitch Short

Irae Simone

Lachlan Swinton

Cody Walker

NSW Women's squad for Brisbane Tens

Atasi Lafai

Botille Vette-Welsh

Katrina Baker

Grace Hamilton

Sarah Halvorsen

Emily Robinson

Ashleigh Hewson (C)

Ilisevea Batibasaga

Cobie-Jane Morgan

Ana-Lise Sio

Noella Green

Tamsin Sheppard

Evelyn Horomia

Olivia Brooks

Kennedy Cherrington

Layne Morgan

Arabella McKenzie

Chloe Leaupepe