With Wests Tigers set to announce their squad for the 2015 Auckland Nines at Friday’s Members Party, take a look at the other confirmed squads that Jason Taylor’s side will face in the Hunua Pool group stage.
The Club’s three opponents — New Zealand Warriors, Gold Coast Titans and Canberra Raiders — have all announced their squads for the tournament, with several big names set to take the field at Eden Park on Saturday, January 31 and Sunday, February 1.
For the Warriors, 2014 Golden Boot winner Shaun Johnson headlines a high-quality side that also contains the likes of Sam Tomkins, Manu Vatuvei, Simon Mannering and more.
Former Wests Tigers forward Bodene Thompson has also been named in the Warriors initial 22-man squad, while new recruits Matt Allwood and Jonathan Wright have also been named to take the field in Andrew McFadden's side.
Having beaten the Titans in the 2014 Auckland Nines, Wests Tigers will be looking to repeat the process against Gold Coast in this year’s tournament. Neil Henry has named a strong team for the tournament, with speedy outside backs William Zillman, James Roberts, David Mead and Anthony Don all included in the side.
Regular halves Daniel Mortimer and Aidan Sezer will again combine together over the weekend in Auckland, while new hooker Kierran Moseley will look to ignite a forward pack that features David Taylor, Ryan James and more.
Ricky Stuart’s Raiders squad is headlined by the return of former player Kevin Nagas (subject to NRL approval), while several up-and-coming players such as Luke Bateman, Mitch Cornish, Brenko Lee, Tevita Pangai Jnr and Jack Ahearn will be looking to leave their mark throughout the two-day tournament,
With over 90,000 fans taking in the tournament at Eden Park last year in its inaugural season, expect the Auckland Nines to again be a strong success in 2015 when the tournament gets underway on Saturday, January 31.
New Zealand Warriors
Shaun Johnson, Matthew Allwood, Nathan Friend, Ben Henry, Ryan Hoffman, Sebastine Ikahihifo, Solomone Kata, Ngani Laumape, Sam Lisone, Tuimoala Lolohea, Sione Lousi, Simon Mannering, Suaia Matagi, Ben Matulino, Ken Maumalo, Dominique Peyroux, Nathaniel Roache, Bodene Thompson, Sam Tomkins, Chad Townsend, Manu Vatuvei, Jonathan Wright.
Sam Williams, Mitch Cornish, Jarrod Croker, Lachlan Croker, Sisa Waqa, Joel Edwards, Josh McCrone, Rhys Kennedy, Glen Buttriss, Brenko Lee, Bill Tupou, Jack Ahearn, Luke Bateman, Haydon Hodge, Mark Nicholls, Kyle O'Donnell, Tevita Pangai Jnr, Ken Nagas (subject to NRL approval).
Gold Coast Titans
William Zillman, James Roberts, Anthony Don, David Mead, Josh Hoffman, Brad Tighe, Kalifa Faifai Loa, Aidan Sezer, Daniel Mortimer, Christian Hazard, Kierran Moseley, Ryan James, Mark Ioane, Luke Douglas, Lachlan Burr, Davin Crampton, Dave Taylor, Matt Robinson.