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Thread: Rugby News Article - How Brisbane City Might Look

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    Rugby News Article - How Brisbane City Might Look

    NRC: HOW THE 2016 BRISBANE CITY SIDE MIGHT LOOK
    NRC+Rd+4+Brisbane+City+v+North+Harbour+Rays+4DYAZN N6ktBl

    By Michael Atkinson

    Within three short weeks of the Queensland Premier Rugby final, the third instalment of the National Rugby Championship will kick off and we get another opportunity to see the next wave of Australian Rugby superstars.

    As two-time defending champions, Brisbane City are the most successful team in the competition’s history but this year will really challenge their credentials. As they look to complete a three-peat, they are likely to do it without a number of the stars who have spearheaded their first two campaigns.

    The likes of Samu Kerevi, Nicholas Frisby, and Liam Gill are likely to be involved in the Wallabies or, in the case of Gill, sipping Kronenburg in the south of France. They are three massive places to fill and their replacements will really determine the team’s success in 2016.

    Based on the players who played last year who are available again this season, considering the Reds players who are departing and some form players from club rugby, here is what Brisbane City's best XV could potentially look like:

    Loosehead Prop: Markus Vanzati

    Vanzati featured for City in eight of their matches in 2015, coming off the bench each time. He has been powerful for Souths at club level this year and has trained with the Reds all season. That experience will be invaluable for the young prop who has been able to hone his skills against the most successful scrums in Super Rugby.

    Hooker: Andrew Ready

    The hooker picks himself – Ready is a lock. He has been a revelation for the Reds in 2016, forcing his way in to the starting jersey and earning a training spot for the Wallabies pre-test camp. Although he could gain some more Wallabies experience in training camps, it’s likely he’ll still be available for the City boys.

    Tighthead Prop: Sam Talakai

    Entering his third season and a strong candidate to assume the captaincy, Talakai will be first choice in the number 3 jersey.

    Locks: Caydern Neville and Patrick Morrey

    Reds lock Neville will assume his role in the tight five and a strong favourite to partner him is the impressive UQ forward, Morrey. Moree is capable of playing all three backrow positions as well as lock, but with the City loose forwards pretty set, Morrey’s form could be rewarded with the number five jersey.

    Blindside Flanker: Luke Beauchamp

    Brothers’ Beauchamp played every game for Brisbane in 2015, starting in all but three, including the final. His form for second placed Brothers suggests he’ll hold on to his place.

    Openside Flanker: Michael Gunn

    Gunn has played ‘supporting actor’ to Liam Gill at both NRC and Super Rugby level and with Gill heading to Toulon, this is Gunn’s chance to fire.

    Number 8: Angus Scott-Young

    The number eight jersey is wide open after the departure of Jake Schatz and Curtis Browning. Scott Higginbotham filled the role for most of last season but there’s no word on whether he’ll return in 2016. A front-runner to fill this spot is a player with a familiar name for QLD Rugby fans: Scott-Young. Angus that is. Son of former Reds and Wallabies enforcer, Sam Scott-Young, the 2016 QLD and Australian U20s rep is a chip off the old block and this tournament could be a launching pad for the young back-rower.


    Scrumhalf: Moses Sorovi

    A big void to fill will be the absence of Nick Frisby who is likely to be on Wallabies duty for most of the NRC campaign. With the other QLD scrumhalves, James Tuttle and Scott Gale, both aligned with QLD Country, this position is likely to go to someone who has impressed in club rugby. Sorovi is an exciting young halfback who has lit up the Premier Rugby competition for UQ. He came off the bench for the last five games in 2015, including the final, so he is well placed to fill Frisby’s boots.

    Flyhalf: Jake McIntyre

    At No.10 it’s hard to see anyone assuming this role other than two-time championship player, McIntyre. You can bet your house on that.

    Inside Centre: Henry Taefu

    Likewise at 12, Taefu is unlikely to be removed, but who his partner will be is another question.

    Outside Centre: Toby White

    Samu Kerevi will most definitely see more time in the gold jersey (Wallabies gold that is) so Brisbane will be searching for a replacement. One tried and tested option is East Tigers and 2014 NRC Championship winner, White. The experienced White had an injury interrupted start to 2016, but has returned to the field and in impressive fashion in recent weeks.

    Wing: Chris Kuridrani and Alex Gibbon

    The back three are pretty much guaranteed with the returning Chris ‘The Panther’ Kuridrani and newly-capped Red, Gibbon to provide the speed on the flanks.

    Fullback: Junior Laloifi

    The Ballymore Kid and 2015 leading try scorer Junior Laloifi should get plenty of game time at fullback. Karmichael Hunt may feature during the season but is currently injured and may also be in Wallabies reckoning if fit, so Laloifi is the tip to start at the back.


    As the first two seasons have shown, no NRC side will be able to keep the same 15 players on the park for the whole campaign so here’s a few other players that could very well feature in the third tier competition.

    The Bolters:

    Isaak Fines-Leilewasa: The electric Sunnybank halfback has been on fire all year for the hot and cold Dragons. Fines-Leilewasa has a sharp passing game, is strong in support and loves a cheeky dart. He could be the perfect foil coming off the bench for Sorovi.

    Michael Richards: The versatile GPS backrower or lock played three games off the bench for City in 2015 and was this year rewarded for his strong club form with selection in the Australian Barbarians side. Expect to see his wiry frame in the mix again.

    Josh Birch: The young outside centre has been dominating week in and week out for UQ. His strong balling carrying and sharp feet have resulted in eight tries from 15 games in club rugby, and he could well beat White to the 13 jersey.

    Despite the departure of some regulars from the first two seasons and others taking the step up to national duties, Brisbane City still look to be capable of putting forward a Championship winning squad.

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    'The hooker picks himself - Ready is a lock.'

    ... well which is he?

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    Champion Contributor todd4's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by maelkann View Post
    'The hooker picks himself - Ready is a lock.'

    ... well which is he?
    as in 'lock him in'.

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