The New Zealand Universities U23 team departs for England this week to compete in the Inaugural World Universities Rugby Cup, hosted by Oxford University.
The New Zealand squad includes a mix of players affiliated to New Zealand university-based clubs, including several players that won club championship titles this year in Wellington for Old Boys University in Wellington and in in Christchurch for Lincoln University.
The New Zealand U23 team will be up against teams from England (Oxford University), South Africa (University of Cape Town), Ireland (Trinity College Dublin), Japan (Waseda University), Canada (University of British Columbia), the USA (Stanford University) and Russia (Siberian Federal University).
Competition is split into two Pools, with matches on Tuesday 15 Sptember and Friday 18 September and Finals on Saturday 19 September, Sunday 20 September and Monday 21 September. The Pool games are being played at Edwards School Oxford and the Finals are at Oxford’s home ground at ground at Iffley road.
New Zealand team co-coach Ian Tulloch said that the NZU team was selected on nominations from the constituent clubs – Auckland University, North Harbour Marist (Massey), Waikato University, Napier Pirates, Massey Palmerston North, Old Boys University, Canterbury University, Lincoln University and Otago University.
“The team mainly consists of players under 23, with a couple of older heads,” said Tulloch.
“The selection idea for the team is to give our promising young players an opportunity on the world stage and there are many players in the team that have age grade representative honours.
“The team brings an exciting mix of experience and youthful exuberance, and like all university rugby teams we will ensure our passion to play with style, while enjoying the game will be paramount to our strategy and game plan.”
The New Zealand U23 Universities squad is:
Chris Gawler – Lincoln – Canterbury U20, Canterbury Colts
Callum Hardie – Otago – late withdrawal – injured
Adam Jowsey – Massey – Manawatu U19
Ben Hendry – Canterbury – Otago Metro U16, Otago Metro U18, Canterbury U21 Colts
Angus Williams – Otago – NZU tour to Japan, Otago Dev XV 2014, Otago U20 2013, Otago U19 2012
James Ferrier – Auckland
Zac Power – Old Boys University – NZ Universities U21 2013
Angus Cameron – Otago – Canterbury U18 2011
Hamish Walker – Otago
Alfie Broughton – Lincoln – South Island Universities, Canterbury U19, Canterbury Colts
Liam Dorherty – Old Boys University – Wellington U19 ( 2014 )
Morgyn Cowan – Canterbury – Canterbury U13,14,15,16,18,19
Patrick Ryan – Auckland
Ryan Hathaway Massey – Manawatu U19 – 2014
Harry Peeters – Lincoln
Jordan Lay – Auckland – Past NZU teams, Auckland representative teams
Nick Kavanagh – Old Boys University
Tom Brown – Old Boys University
Levi Kemp – Old Boys University
Reece Brosnan – Massey
Rob Sullivan – Canterbury – Auckland, Cantabrians U19, CHCH Metro U20, Cant U21 colts,
NZU U21, SI Universities U23, NZU 2015
Kieran Parker – Otago
Matt Jones – Auckland – Auckland U18
Sam Chamberlain – Old Boys University – Wellington City 2014
Simon Healy Auckland – Auckland B’s, Auckland age groups
Te Raina Richards-Coxhead – Waikato – Waikato U19, 18, 16, 15, Chiefs U18
Cam Watkins – Canterbury – BOP U15, BOP U18, Canterbury U20, Canterbury U21
Manager: Stuart Mather – Auckland
Coach: Ian Tulloch – Old Boys University
Coach: Brendon Timmins – Otago
Trainer: Paul Downes – Cardiff Blues
Trainer: Richard Walters – Cardiff Blues
Physio: Chris Desmond – TBI Health