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Australia A team: Ryan Lonergan to lead, Edmed at flyhalf as Gilmore names side to face Samoa

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30th June, 2022
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Brumbies scrumhalf Ryan Lonergan will captain the Australia A side against Samoa in the Pacific Nations Cup in Fiji on Saturday.

Reds backrower Fraser McReight and Melbourne Rebels fullback Reece Hodge have been named as Vice Captains as Australia A returns to the field for the first time since 2008 this weekend. 

McReight is set to start alongside Tim Anstee and Will Harris in the backrow as Anstee returns to the gold jersey, last representing his country for the Aussie 7s. 

The side is set to play in Suva at 11am (AEST) with Fijian born Seru Uru returning home after being named in the second row alongside Ryan Smith. 

Matt Gibbon, Billy Pollard and former Wallaby Tom Robertson have all been named in the front row. Robertson is eager to impress as he aims to return to the Wallabies outfit. 

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Super Rugby sensation Tane Edmed will wear the No.10 jersey and is joined by Waratahs teammates Lalakai Foketi and Mark Nawaqanitawase who have also been named in the starting backline. 

Hodge, Reds pairing Jock Campbell and Hamish Stewart round out the backline with Stewart taking the number 12 jersey while Campbell will look to make an impact from the left wing. 

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Former Wallaby and Western Force captain Feleti Kaitu’u has been named as reserve hooker while Harry Hoopert and Archer Holz make up the reserve front-row. 

Rebels halfback James Tuttle has also earned his way into the side after being a late inclusion into the squad joined by fellow late call-up Hudson Creighton and Waratahs fan favourite Dylan Pietsch.  

“I’ve been extremely impressed with Ryan’s (Lonergan) ability to lead his Brumbies side over their successful Super Rugby Pacific campaign,” said coach Jason Gilmore.

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“He’s certainly the right man for the job and pairing him in front of two already proven leaders in McReight and Hodge as vice captains builds us a pretty inspiring leadership group.

“We’ve had to make some extremely tough decisions leading up to game one with many players missing out on a jersey that certainly deserves it.

“It just shows the extraordinary level of depth we currently have in Australian Rugby and I think this competition will only yield successful results for the program.

The match will be shown on Stan Sport.

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Australia A team to face Samoa

1.    Matt Gibbon – Melbourne Rebels
2.    Billy Pollard – Brumbies
3.    Tom Robertson – Western Force 
4.    Seru Uru – Queensland Reds
5.    Ryan Smith – Queensland Reds
6.    Tim Anstee – Western Force
7.    Fraser McReight (VC) – Queensland Reds
8.    Will Harris –  NSW Waratahs
9.    Ryan Lonergan (C) – Brumbies
10.    Tane Edmed – NSW Waratahs
11.    Jock Campbell – Queensland Reds
12.    Hamish Stewart – Queensland Reds
13.    Lalakai Foketi – NSW Waratahs
14.    Mark Nawaqanitawase – NSW Waratahs
15.    Reece Hodge (VC) – Melbourne Rebels 

Reserves

16.    Feleti Kaitu’u – Western Force
17.    Harry Hoopert – Queensland Reds
18.    Archer Holz – NSW Waratahs 
19.    Hugh Sinclair – NSW Waratahs
20.    Langi Gleeson- NSW Waratahs 
21.    James Tuttle – Melbourne Rebels 
22.    Hudson Creighton – Brumbies 
23.    Dylan Pietsch – NSW Waratahs

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