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Posted by RLPA

September 19, 2017

Prime Minister’s XIII squad for PNG

The Players’ Champion winner James Tedesco has been named at fullback for the Australian Prime Minister’s XIII side to take on Papua New Guinea in Port Moresby this Saturday (23 September).

Head Coach Mal Meninga has named six debutants in the squad, with Valentine Holmes, Andrew Fifita, Api Koroisau, Dylan Walker, Jack Bird and Paul Vaughan all set to make the trip to PNG for the first time.

The squad also features six players who represented Australia in the ANZAC Test match earlier this season, positioning this match as genuine selection trial for the upcoming Rugby League World Cup.

Manly Sea Eagles flyer Tom Trbojevic will make his senior representative debut in the game, while Wests Tigers prop Aaron Woods will captain the side for the first time.

Five players from the Players’ Dream Team (Woods, Tedesco, Dane Gagai, Wade Graham and David Klemmer) named last week will now line-up in the green and gold.

“I’m absolutely delighted with this team. We’ve chosen the best available players in each position with fifteen of the eighteen players having represented their State already,” Meninga said.

“To get these guys together so close to the Rugby League World Cup is a real coup for our preparations, which will really kick into gear following the NRL Grand Final.

“Some of them have been fortunate enough to have already experienced playing in PNG, but for the new guys, it really is something to cherish. There’s nothing else quite like it.

“I’m looking forward to seeing how everyone gels together in a short timeframe and handles the occasion.”

Australian Prime Minister’s XIII squad

  1. James Tedesco (Wests Tigers)
  2. Dane Gagai (Newcastle Knights)
  3. Josh Dugan (St George-Illawarra Dragons)
  4. Tom Trbojevic (Manly Warringah Sea Eagles)
  5. Valentine Holmes (Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks)*
  6. Jack Bird (Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks)*
  7. James Maloney (Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks)
  8. Aaron Woods (c) (Wests Tigers)
  9. Api Koroisau (Manly Warringah Sea Eagles)*
  10. Andrew Fifita (Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks)*
  11. Tyson Frizell (St George-Illawarra Dragons)
  12. Josh Papalii (Canberra Raiders)
  13. Jake Trbojevic (Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles)
  14. Wade Graham (Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks)
  15. David Klemmer (Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs)
  16. Dylan Walker (Manly Warringah Sea Eagles)*
  17. Josh Jackson (Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs)
  18. Paul Vaughan (St George-Illawarra Dragons)*

*Denotes PM XIII debut

Coach: Mal Meninga

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