Cape Town - Reds head coach Brad Thorn has announced his squad for the 2019 Super Rugby season.
In total, 27 players have been retained from Queensland’s 2018 squad, including Wallabies duo Brandon Paenga-Amosa and Scott Higginbotham, plus Bond University Queensland Country’s Harry Hoopert, Harry Hockings, Liam Wright, Tate McDermott and their captain Duncan Paia’aua.
17 players re-signed ahead of the 2019 season, including Wallabies representatives Taniela Tupou, Izack Rodda, Lukhan Tui, Caleb Timu and Samu Kerevi, in addition to Queensland Country stars Angus Blyth, Angus Scott-Young, James Tuttle, Chris Feauai-Sautia, Filipo Daugunu and Jordan Petaia.
Twins JP and Ruan Smith, plus their McInnes Wilson Lawyers Brisbane City team-mates Adam Korczyk and Moses Sorovi also re-signed in 2018, as well as Alex Mafi and Aidan Toua.
There’s also three new signings, all of whom have been selected from Queensland’s National Rugby Championship (NRC) teams, including 2018 Grand Finalist Queensland Country pairing Efi Ma’afu and Harry Wilson.
St.George Queensland Reds head coach Brad Thorn said: “We’ve managed to keep a fairly consistent squad for 2019. We’ve retained roughly 90 percent of the players we had last year, who have continually played with each other in both Super Rugby and in the NRC.
“A handful have been rewarded for their hunger and hard work during 2018. After coming through our Queensland Pathway we are pleased to see them get their opportunity and be a part of our Reds squad.
“The squad will be supported by an excellent coaching staff here at Ballymore and we’re excited for the challenge ahead in 2019,” said Thorn.
As announced earlier this month, Thorn will work alongside two new Assistant Coaches in 2019 following the return of Jim McKay as the Reds Attack Coach, plus the appointment of Peter Ryan as Defence Coach. While Tony McGahan will lead the Reds Academy as Head Coach, along with Paul Carozza in a newly created role as the Head of Talent Management to ensure the continued development of elite Rugby talent in Queensland.
Reds fans should also keep an eye out for further player announcements prior to the 2019 season, including a handful of Queensland Pathway products who will be handed Developing Squad contracts.
Reds 2019 Super Rugby squad:
Forwards: Harry Hoopert, JP Smith, Ruan Smith, Taniela Tupou, Efi Ma’afu, Alex Mafi, Brandon Paenga-Amosa, Angus Blyth, Harry Hockings, Izack Rodda, Lukhan Tui, Scott Higginbotham, Adam Korczyk, Angus Scott-Young, Caleb Timu, Harry Wilson, Liam Wright
Backs: Tate McDermott, Moses Sorovi, James Tuttle, Hamish Stewart, Chris Feauai-Sautia, Samu Kerevi, Duncan Paia’aua, Filipo Daugunu, Will Eadie, Karmichael Hunt, Izaia Perese, Jordan Petaia, Aidan Toua