Jeff Dickinson-Fox reviews the campaign which saw Melbourne Storm crowned premiers in 2017.
3 days ago
Kiwis Coach Gary Kemble has confirmed six players will make their debuts for the Kiwis in the Centenary Test against the Kangaroos in Wellington next Sunday (October 14).
In trimming his original 19-man squad, Kemble handed first test jerseys to wingers Luke Covell (Cronulla) and Taniela Tuiaki (Wests Tigers), halfback Jeremy Smith (South Sydney), prop FuifuiMoimoi (Parramatta) and loose forward Jeremy Smith (Melbourne) with Melbourne prop Jeff Lima included on the interchange bench.
The selection means two players with the same name will appear in the same test side for the first time in New Zealand rugby league history - Jeremy James Smith in the No 7 jersey and Jeremy Jon Oscar Smith in No 13.
There has been a previous instance of two players with the same name appearing in the same Kiwi side but it was in a tour match against Queensland in 1925. Jim O'Brien, a second rower from Devonport, had Marist prop Jim O'Brien as a team-mate (Marist, prop) in that match.
With two Smiths and four other new players, Kemble is excited about the prospect of fielding such a new-look side in such a significant test.