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Halse to make Wallaroos history in USA clash

Caitlyn Halse of the Waratahs passes the ball during the Super W match between Melbourne Rebels Women and NSW Waratahs Women at AAMI Park, on April 21, 2023, in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)

Waratah Caitlyn Halse will become the youngest ever Wallaroos player when she runs out in the No.15 jersey against the United States on Friday.

The 17-year-old Halse is one of several changes in the Wallaroos starting side after the defeat to Canada in the opening match of the Pacific Four series.

Halse overtakes the previous age record set by Sharyn Williams in 1994 and replaces Lori Cramer in the starting side.

In further changes, Eva Karpani will start in the forwards and Samantha Wood at scrumhalf with Bridie O’Gorman and Layne Morgan moving back to the bench.

Last week’s debutants Sally Fuesaina and Hera-Barb Malcolm Heke retain their spots on the bench with Tabua Tuinakauvadra dropping out of the squad.

“Despite the result, we took a lot of positives from our first hit out. We are also aware of our areas to work on and the players have worked really hard on these this week,” coach Jo Yapp said.

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“We have made a couple of changes, Caitlyn comes into the side to make her Test debut. She has impressed at Super W level and we are all excited to see her gain her first cap.

“We are also looking forward to playing against the USA at AAMI Park in Melbourne.”

WALLAROOS TEAM

  1. Brianna Hoy (NSW Waratahs) – 4 caps
  2. Tania Naden (ACT Brumbies) – 11 caps
  3. Eva Karpani (NSW Waratahs) – 22 caps
  4. Kaitlan Leaney (NSW Waratahs) – 16 caps
  5. Michaela Leonard (c) (Western Force) – 23 caps
  6. Siokapesi Palu (ACT Brumbies) – 7 caps
  7. Ashley Marsters (Melbourne Rebels) – 27 caps
  8. Piper Duck (NSW Waratahs) – 11 caps
  9. Samantha Wood (Western Force) – 1 cap
  10. Arabella McKenzie (NSW Waratahs) – 22 caps
  11. Desiree Miller (NSW Waratahs) – 3 caps
  12. Trilleen Pomare (Western Force) – 25 caps
  13. Georgina Friedrichs (NSW Waratahs) – 20 caps
  14. Maya Stewart (NSW Waratahs) – 9 caps
  15. Caitlyn Halse* (NSW Waratahs) – debut

Reserves

  1. Hera-Barb Malcolm Heke (Western Force) – 1 cap
  2. Sally Fuesaina (ACT Brumbies) – 1 cap
  3. Bridie O’Gorman (NSW Waratahs) – 18 caps
  4. Atasi Lafai (NSW Waratahs) – 10 caps
  5. Leilani Nathan (NSW Waratahs) – 3 caps
  6. Layne Morgan (NSW Waratahs) – 20 caps
  7. Faitala Moleka (ACT Brumbies) – 7 caps
  8. Lori Cramer (Queensland Reds) – 20 caps
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