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7 hours ago
The New Zealand Rugby League have named their squad to play Australia in Newcastle on Friday 23rd April.
Notable ommisions are Warriors star halfback Stacey Jones and 2nd rower, Ali Lauitiiti. Head Coach Daniel Anderson says Jones was left out of the side after the halfback made himself unavailable for selection.
Anderson and Tony Kemp spoke at length to Stacey on Friday night and says: "He was given the opportunity to play in the test, but felt that his form did not warrant selection and the team would perform better without him, given his current form. After careful consideration he has declared himself unavailable."
"We are obviously disappointed for Stacey and the team, but it should be remembered that he has been a magnificent performer for the Kiwis over many years and there will be plenty of opportunity to play himself back into the frame before the Tri Nations later in the year." says Coach Anderson.
Brisbane Bronco newcomer, Karmicheal Hunt, declared himself unavailable for Kiwi selection.He stated that playing for Queensland in the State of Origin competition was his priority.
1. David Vaealiki- Parramatta Eels 2. Leslie Vainakolo- Bradford Bulls 3. Nigel Vagana- Cronulla Sharks 4. Clinton Toopi- NZ Warriors 5. Francis Meli- NZ Warriors 6. Sione Faumuina- NZ Warriors 7. Thomas Leuluai- NZ Warriors 8. Jason Cayless- Sydney Roosters 9. Robbie Paul- Bradford Bulls 10. Nathan Cayless- Parramatta Eels 11. Tony Puletua- Penrith Panthers 12. Joe Galuvao- Penrith Panthers 13. Ruben Wiki- Canberra Raiders Interchange 14. Jerry Seuseu- NZ Warriors 15. Sonny-Bill Williams- Canterbury Bulldogs 16. Paul Whatuira- Penrith Panthers 17. Stephen Kearney- Melbourne Storm 18. Frank Pritchard- Penrith Panthers
To be invited into camp: 19. Epalahame Lauaki- NZ Warriors 20. Tavita Latu NZ- Warriors