The North Queensland Toyota Cowboys have been well represented in the Australian Kangaroos squad to contest the 2016 Four Nations tournament.
Incumbent Kangaroos Johnathan Thurston, Matt Scott and Michael Morgan have been named today by the Australian Rugby League Commission in the 24-man squad, along with centre Justin O’Neill, who made his State of Origin debut for the Queensland Maroons earlier this year.
The Four Nations tournament involves Australia, New Zealand, England and debutants Scotland and runs from 28 October - 20 November.
Aside from O’Neill, the 24-man squad to play in the Four Nations contains six other potential Kangaroos debutants – Shannon Boyd, Jake Friend, Tyson Frizell, Valentine Holmes, James Maloney and Matt Moylan.
The squad for the Test match against New Zealand on 15 October at Perth’s nib Stadium will come from the 24 players named today, and will be confirmed early next week.
“This is a new era for the Kangaroos and the squad which has been selected for the Four Nations tournament reflects that,” Kangaroos coach Mal Meninga said.
“This squad has been selected for the present, but with an eye to the future.
“It is extremely heartening to see the players buy in and the quality of the players available highlights that.
“We have very experienced Test players as well as some outstanding young players who have big futures in the green and gold.”
NRL CEO Todd Greenberg said the selectors had been informed that both Semi Radradra and Andrew Fifita were not eligible for selection for the tournament.
“In Semi's case, while he has pleaded not guilty, he has charges to answer at the end of the tournament,” Mr Greenberg said.
“We don't want either him or the team to be distracted by this matter and have decided he will not be eligible for selection on this occasion.
“In Andrew's case, selection for the Australian team requires standards on and off the field and as he is currently under investigation by the Integrity Unit, we believe he still has some way to go to meet those off field standards.”
The Australian Four Nations squad will depart for Perth this Sunday (9 October), to be farewelled at a special Kangaroos reunion at the Sydney Cricket Ground.
Cam Smith (c)