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New Zealand Heartland XV 2016 squad named

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New Zealand Heartland XV 2016 squad named

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Congratulations to Sam Monaghan on being named once again and to Eddie Cranston on his debut selection.

The New Zealand Heartland XV 2016 squad has been selected ahead of a three-match campaign starting in November, including two games in Fiji.

The matches, to be played between 5–11 November, will see the team play New Zealand Marist for the annual Ian McCrae Cup before travelling to Fiji to play Nadi and Nadroga.

The 26-man New Zealand Heartland XV squad, which has been selected from the Mitre 10 Heartland Championship 2016, sees 11 of the 12 Heartland Provincial Unions represented.

The New Zealand Heartland XV squad is:

Dan Hytongue * blrlbl2
James Lash blrlbl2
Aaron Lahmert * hkplbl
Willie Paia’aua * hkplbl
Scott Cameron * hkplbl
James Hemara kctlbl2
Zayn Tipping kctlbl2
John Koko * kctlbl2
Aarin Dunster kctlbl2
Jackson Donlan mcblbl2
Maleli Sau * mcblbl2
Nete Caucau * mcblbl2
Ralph Darling notlbl2
Lemi Masoe notlbl2
Everard Reid * pvblbl2
Siosiua Moala * pvblbl2
Timaru Tafa scblbl2
Kieran Coll * scblbl2
Hayden Wisnewski * tvylbl2
Eddie Cranston * wbslbl2
Sam Monaghan wbslbl2
Lindsay Horrocks wanglbl2
Peter Rowe wanglbl2
Viki Tofa * wanglbl2
Te Rangatira Waitokia * wanglbl2
Josh Manning * wcslbl2

The team has 15 new caps (denoted by *) and 12 players will be running out in Meads Cup and Lochore Cup Finals this weekend.

The squad includes 20 year old winger Te Rangatira Waitokia from Wanganui, who is Mitre 10 Heartland Competition top try scorer and James Lash from Buller who is top points scorer.

South Canterbury’s Barry Matthews and Poverty Bay’s Mutu Ngarimu will coach the team.

Matthews said he expects the Heartland XV to be competitive in their upcoming fixtures.

“We’ve picked the team on form. It doesn’t matter if you are an 18 year old selected for the first time or a 36 year old war horse, if they are playing good rugby then we have picked them for the team.

“The Heartland competition is getting better every year. It proves the competitiveness of the competition that eleven of the provincial teams are represented in the squad.

“The team will only come together next week so we will need to keep the game plan simple. That said, we have a big forward pack and some exciting backs so we will want to use the ball a bit.

“We are looking forward to the annual clash with New Zealand Marist for the McCrae Cup. It’s always a close game and will be a good warm up for the games in Fiji.

“The games in Fiji will be tough. Fiji loves its rugby and after winning the 7s gold in Rio they will confident heading into these games.”

The New Zealand Heartland XV squad will assemble in Auckland on 2 November ahead of their first match on 5 November.

New Zealand Heartland XV fixtures:
Date: Saturday 5 November
Who: New Zealand Heartland XV v New Zealand Marist
Venue: Sacred Heart College, Glenn Innes, Auckland
Time: 2.00pm

Date: Tuesday 8 November
Who: New Zealand Heartland XV v Nadi
Venue: Prince Charles Park, Nadi, Fiji
Time: 5.00pm

Date: Saturday 11 November
Who: New Zealand Heartland XV v Nadroga
Venue: Lawaqa Park, Sigatoka, Fiji
Time: 7.00pm

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