In what must be a new record eight Brisbane State High School players have been selected in the forthcoming Australian Schoolboys tour of England, Wales and Ireland .
Team Captain Jordan Tuapou and Vice Captain Rohan Saifoloi are also both from BSHS.
The squad contains 28 players, 13 of whom are Queenslanders and importantly, four Victorian players in a sign that rugby in the non-traditional states is stirring.
At the other end of the spectrum and disappointingly, not one player from the ACT – which is a fair reflection of their form this year.
The selectors have kept the faith with the starting XV that was defeated by NZ Secondary Schools at Ballymore last week. All First XV players from that side were selected; however, three of the bench players missed out – Joe O’Regan (BSHS), Waita Setu (Nudgee College) and Mitch Felsman (Iona College).
Seven players were selected for the touring party from the Australia A team that was heavily defeated by NZ Schoolboys at The Southport School on 5 October.
One player who was selected had played no part in any of the Australian Schoolboys program, Joel Faulkner from BSHS. It was said that he was injured but that may not have been entirely the case. Word is that he’s been brought back to bolster up the centres as the selectors were not entirely satisfied with that aspect of play in the two games against NZ. Faulkner is already contracted to the Reds Academy as is Kimami Sitauti (Nudgee College), Matt Lucas (Gregory Terrace), Liam Gill (Gregory Terrace – Tour captain) and Paul Alo-Emile (BSHS).
Matt Lucas follows in the footsteps of his brother Ben who took part in the 2005 UK, Wales and Ireland Schoolboys tour.
There are always contentious decisions and Felsman, Setu and Simon Morahan (The Southport School) are probably the unlucky ones. From seeing them in action against the Kiwis, the team seems fairly well balanced and should do well. It is traditionally a difficult tour and some of the sides they come up against will contain rugby players contracted to professional clubs.
Paul Alo-Emile – Brisbane State High School QLD – Prop
Curtis Browning – Brisbane State High School QLD – Lock
Jack De Guingand – St Kevin’s College VIC – Flanker
Rodney Esekia – Chandler Secondary College VIC – Fly-Half/Centre
Joel Faulkner – Brisbane State High School QLD – Centre
Chris Feauai – Brisbane State High School QLD – Wing
Tyson Frizell – Illawarra SHS NSW – Centre
Matthew Garland – Brisbane State High School QLD – Wing
Liam Gill (Tour Captain) – St Joseph’s Gregory Terrace QLD – Flanker
Kyle Godwin – Aquinas College WA – Fly-half
Angus Hamilton – Scotch College VIC – Lock
Marcus Heather – Endeavour SHS NSW – Prop
Matthew Ika – Brisbane State High School QLD – No 8
Luke Jones – St Pius X College NSW – Lock
Jack Kimmince – The Southport School QLD – Prop
Tom Kingston – St Aloysius’ College NSW – Centre
Matt Lucas – St Joseph’s Gregory Terrace QLD – Halfback
Ross Marais – The Southport School QLD – Hooker
Nathan Paila – Hallam Senior College VIC – No 8
Greg Peterson – The Scots College NSW – Lock
Hugh Roach – Newington College NSW – Hooker
Rohan Saifoloi (Team Vice-Captain) – Brisbane State High School QLD – Fly-half
Scott Sio – Trinity Grammar School NSW – Prop
Kimami Sitauti – St Joseph’s Nudgee College QLD – Wing
Nicholas Stirzaker – Knox Grammar School NSW – Halfback
Jordan Tuapou (Team Captain) – Brisbane State High School QLD – Flanker
Joe Welch – St Ignatius’ College NSW – Prop
Jacob Woodhouse – The Scots College NSW – Fullback
Friday, 27 November Australia v Irish Schools
Wednesday, 2 December Australia v Ireland Under 18
Saturday, 5 December Australia v Welsh XV
Wednesday, 9 December Australia v England North Academies Team
Sunday, 13 December Australia v England Under 18 North
Wednesday, 16 December Australia v England North Academies Team
Saturday, 19 December Australia v England under 19
PS A replay of Australian Schoolboys v NZ Secondary Schools at Ballymore is being telecast on Saturday, 31 October at 3.30pm on Fox Sport.