Nine Illawarriors Make Cockatoos Squad

NSW Country LogoThe news from last weekend’s Country championships keeps coming with the recent announcement of the Cockatoos training squads. Illawarra and Newcastle Hunter as expected have dominated the Cockatoo squad with nine and ten representatives respectively. The thirty five man squad will go into camp on May 21 & 22 when it will be reduced to a smaller squad for the Cockatoos four match program.

Player of the Country Tournament Aaron Louden leads the Illawarra contingent with his Shoalhaven team mate Alex Wilson also getting the nod. Veteran Hooker, Shamrocks Anthony Allport, gets a recall to Country duties after a strong effort over the weekend. Niko Degei from Kiama is well rewarded with his selection after his excellent form over the last couple of seasons.

Illawarrior captain and a strong candidate for the Cockatoos leadership, Paul Tuala heads a list of four Wollongong Uni players in the squad. One of the standout players of the weekend matches in Armidale, Allyd Owen is in along with Uni team mates Nik Rangiuira and Tyler Aitkin. Illawarra’s leading try scorer so far this year Rhys Peters from Shamrocks also get his just reward after an eye catching performance in Armidale.

Also involved with the Cockatoos this season is Illawarrior Head Coach Shaun McCreedy who is one of two Assistant Coaches to Head Coach Mat Thomas. Illawarra Board member Scott McKellar is also on board as Assistant Manager of the Cockatoos Squad.

Central West have seven players in the squad with Far North Coast, who were coached by ex Shamrock and Illawarra front rower John Docker, has five reps with Central North and New England two each. The Training Squad will come together next weekend May 21 & 22 for a camp which will see the squad reduced for their upcoming program. The Cockatoos will play the Australian Under 20 Squad (May 28), the Brumbies Provincial side (June 18), Sydney Subbies (June 25) and their final match on July 2nd will be against the Queensland Country Blue Heelers.

After the disappointment of their last minute loss on the weekend, four Illawarrior Colt’s players are celebrating their inclusion in the Cockatoo Colts Training squad for 2016. Congratulations to Angus Ashbrook from Tech Waratahs, Vincent Robinson from Shamrocks, Elijah Sa from Campbelltown and Rueben Thompson from Wollongong Uni who are in the squad. More details of the Colts program will be made available shortly.

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