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Wallaroos announce squad for next month's World Cup

By Sam Smith
(Photo by Matt Roberts/Getty Images)

Wallaroos coach Jay Tregonning has announced his 32-player squad for Rugby World Cup, starting on 8 October in New Zealand. The squad is captained by Shannon Parry, who plays in her fourth World Cup, and it remains largely unchanged from the one that contested the O’Reilly Cup against New Zealand in August.

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The only change sees Sharni Williams called into the squad for her fourth World Cup in the XVs format – the Olympic and Commonwealth Games gold medallist will compete in her second World Cup in the space of a month after she plays in the sevens event in Cape Town this month.

Likewise, Bienne Terita will join the squad fresh from Cape Town. The 19-year-old sevens star scored two tries on her Wallaroos debut against the Black Ferns in Adelaide last month. The wing position will be covered by Terita, Ivania Wong, Mahalia Murphy and Maya Stewart, while Pauline Piliae-Rasabale and Lori Cramer will share full-back duties.

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Sharni Williams, Georgina Friedrichs, Cecilia Smith and Siokapesi Palu are the chosen centres, with Arabella McKenzie and Trilleen Pomare the available options at fly-half. Iliseva Batibasaga played in her first World Cup in 2006 and she joins Layne Morgan as the scrum-half options for the 2021 edition.

A strong back row quintet sees captain Parry alongside Emily Chancellor, Grace Hamilton, Grace Kemp and Piper Duck. The front row options include props Liz Patu, Emily Robinson, Bree-Anna Cheatham, Madison Schuck, Bridie O’Gorman and Eva Karpani alongside Ashley Marsters, Adiana Talaki, and Tania Naden at the hooker position.

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Michaela Leonard, Atasi Lafai, Sera Naiqama, and Kaitlan Leaney have been selected to lock the scrum. “The named squad has experience and depth, and we are looking forward to showing our continued improvement at the Rugby World Cup,” said Wallaroos coach Tregonning.

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“It is important to acknowledge the whole squad, including those that have missed out on selection. Although disappointed, the players that have missed out have continued to train hard in their state-based training sessions and are committed to helping make their teammates stronger.”

“We wish the sevens teams all the best in their World Cup in Cape Town this weekend and we are excited to have Sharni and Bienne as part of our squad at the conclusion of the tournament.”

In Pool A, the Wallaroos will line up against New Zealand, Scotland, and Wales, kicking off their campaign with a clash against the hosts to open the tournament on Saturday, October 8, at Eden Park in Auckland. The Wallaroos return to camp on the Gold Coast on September 11 before travelling to New Zealand on September 24.

Wallaroos squad (Rugby World Cup):
Prop
Liz Patu – Queensland Reds
Emily Robinson – NSW Waratahs
Bree-Anna Cheatham – Queensland Reds
Madison Schuck – Queensland Reds
Bridie O’Gorman – NSW Waratahs
Eva Karpani – NSW Waratahs

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Hooker
Ashley Marsters – Melbourne Rebels
Adiana Talakai – NSW Waratahs
Tania Naden – ACT Brumbies

Lock
Michaela Leonard – ACT Brumbies
Sera Naiqama – NSW Waratahs
Atasi Lafai – NSW Waratahs
Kaitlan Leaney – NSW Waratahs

Back row
Shannon Parry (captain) – Queensland Reds
Emily Chancellor – NSW Waratahs
Grace Hamilton – NSW Waratahs
Grace Kemp – ACT Brumbies
Piper Duck – NSW Waratahs

Scrum-half
Iliseva Batibasaga – NSW Waratahs
Layne Morgan – NSW Waratahs

Fly-half
Arabella McKenzie – NSW Waratahs
Trilleen Pomare – Western Force

Centre
Siokapesi Palu – ACT Brumbies
Cecilia Smith – Queensland Reds
Georgina Friedrichs – NSW Waratahs
Sharni Williams – Aussie 7s

Wing
Mahalia Murphy – NSW Waratahs
Ivania Wong – Queensland Reds
Bienne Terita – Aussie 7s
Maya Stewart – NSW Waratahs

Full-back
Pauline Piliae-Rasabale – NSW Waratahs
Lori Cramer – NSW Waratahs

  • Press release/Rugby Australia

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