2020 New Zealand U20s

  • Players selected for testing are; (grouped in regional centres where testing will take place)

    Leandro Vakatini - Auckland
    Soane Vikena - Auckland
    Hamdahn Tuipulotu - Auckland
    Sione Ahio - Auckland
    Tiaan Tauakipulu - Auckland
    James Brown - Auckland
    Damien Naufahu - Auckland
    Robert Rush - Auckland
    Terrell Peita - Auckland
    Te Rama Reuben - Auckland
    Oliver Parkinson - Auckland
    Cam Church - Auckland
    Corey Kellow - Auckland
    Niko Jones - Auckland
    John Latu - Auckland
    Taufa Funaki - Auckland
    Zarn Sullivan - Auckland
    Aiden Morgan - Wellington
    Patrick Elia - Auckland
    Corey Evans - Auckland
    Lemeki Namoa - Auckland
    Meihana Grindlay - Auckland
    Heremaia Murray - Auckland
    Jack Gray - Auckland
    Jimmy Roots - North Harbour

    Benet Kumeroa - Bay of Plenty
    Pou Sorenson - Bay of Plenty
    Chris Hemi - Bay of Plenty
    Manu Paea - Bay of Plenty
    Bailey Gordon - Bay of Plenty
    Cassius Misa - Bay of Plenty
    Tama Te Aute - Bay of Plenty
    Peni Lasaqa - Bay of Plenty
    Vincent Green - Waikato
    Matt Dobbyn - Waikato
    Stanley Paese - Waikato
    Hakaraia Richards Coxhead - Waikato
    Havila Molia - Waikato
    Tom Martin - Waikato
    Simon Parker - Waikato
    Andrew Viane - Waikato
    Viaolini Ekuasi - Waikato
    Cortez Ratima - Waikato
    Rivez Reihana - Waikato
    Tepaea Cook Savage - Waikato
    Gideon Wrampling - Waikato
    Valynce Te Whare Crosby - Waikato
    Ioane Moananu - Counties Manukau
    Cam Roigard - Counties Manukau
    Crusader Faletagoa'i - Taranaki
    Tupou Vaa'i - Taranaki
    Josh Lord - Taranaki
    Christian Fa'avae - Taranaki
    Lukas Halls - Taranaki
    Blair Murray - Taranaki
    Jake Russ - Otago

    Tyrone Thompson - Wellington
    Taine Plumtree - Wellington
    Caleb Delany - Wellington
    Keelan Whitman - Wellington
    Iona Apineru - Wellington
    Josh Southall - Wellington
    Sam Smith - Wellington
    Shaymus Langton Hurley - Wellington
    Kienan Higgins - Wellington
    Ethan Webster Nonu - Wellington
    Roderick Solo - Wellington
    Ruben Love - Wellington
    Patrick Teddy - Hawkes Bay
    Lattrell Smiler-Ah Kiong - Hawkes Bay
    Ben Strang - Manawatu
    TK Howden - Manawatu
    Jason Myers - Manawatu
    Tyler Laubscher - Manawatu
    Stewart Cruden - Manawatu
    Josiah Maruku - Manawatu
    Drew Wild - Manawatu
    James Bolton - Otago
    Harrison Boyle - Otago

    Finlay Brewis - Canterbury
    Tamaiti Williams - Canterbury
    Thomas Edwards - Canterbury
    Jack Sexton - Canterbury
    Lachie McNair - Canterbury
    Patrick Thacker - Canterbury
    Fletcher Newell - Canterbury
    Ben Lopas - Canterbury
    Daniel Johnson - Canterbury
    Sam Darry - Canterbury
    Mahonri Ngakuru - Canterbury
    Zach Gallagher - Canterbury
    Liam Allen - Canterbury
    Dominic Gardiner - Canterbury
    George Prain - Canterbury
    Luke Donaldson - Canterbury
    Louie Chapman - Canterbury
    Max Hughes - Canterbury
    Ollie Lewis - Canterbury
    Isaiah Punivai - Canterbury
    Chay Fihaki - Canterbury
    Luka Inch - Tasman
    Matt Graham Williams - Tasman
    Taya Brown - Tasman
    Campbell Morgan Parata - Tasman
    George Bell - Otago
    Sean Withy - Otago
    James Arscott - Otago
    Jacob Payne - Southland

    The search for New Zealand’s top, young and emerging, talent will kick off with a refreshed New Zealand Under 20 programme.
    More than 100 players will be tested over the next two weeks as the New Zealand Under 20 programme begins a new cycle.
    New Zealand Under 20 Head Coach Craig Philpott said changes to the World Rugby Under 20 Championship dates to align with the International Window have allowed a re-think of the age-group programme.
    The changes will see more than 100 contenders – almost double the number from previous years – attend regional testing, creating a larger pool of talent to monitor and develop. The first development camp will take place in March, creating a short five-month campaign leading to the World Championships in June/July.
    Traditionally 50 players would attend a December camp, with those players then going through the selection process with subsequent camps and trials. 
    Philpott said the opportunity to increase the number of players in their system while also condensing the programme was enthusiastically received.
    “The opportunity to test and monitor this number of players will have long term benefits. A number of these players aren’t necessarily in the mix for selection next year, but meeting with them now gives us the chance to gauge where they are at and create targeted development plans for them.
    “After testing, players can go back to their provinces and focus on any potential Investec Super Rugby commitments with age group or development teams before reassembling for our first camp,” said Philpott.
    Players from provincial Under 19 teams, New Zealand Secondary Schools teams along with players nominated by provincial unions will join the testing programme. 
    Provincial Union High Performance representatives and New Zealand Under 20 coaching staff will work with each player to create personalised development plans.


  • The fact that Philpott is still in charge doesn't bode well.

  • @Stargazer A lot of players from the 2018 and 2019 NZ Schools teams, as you would expect. It will come down to the quality of the forward pack (particularly the tight five) they can select.

  • @Bovidae I'm glad that Latrell Smiler-Ah Kiong is among them and hope he makes the 2020 NZU20 squad, but I assume that most of the players from the 2019 NZ Schools teams are the players that have been brought in a year early and may not make the NZU20s in 2020.

  • Disappointed with some players not being on the list. I didn't expect many from Hawke's Bay, but only one from our U19s surprises me. No Liam Udy-Johns, Damarus Hokianga, and Tiaki Fabish (although he still qualifies for U19s in 2020), who were among our best (with Patrick Teddy).

    Also no Leo Thompson.

  • There are plenty of 1st 5s on that list and I would predict that Reihana and Sullivan are the favoured two.

    Some younger players will be physically ready to step up straight away while others probably need another year of development.

    More Poo players than from Hawke's.

  • @Bovidae We didn't have a great U19s team due to most of our best 2018 1st XV players still being at school or having left Hawke's Bay. We had several players from Heartland provinces filling the gaps, esp in the backs, and it showed.

    As to 1st five-eights, I expect Smiler-Ah Kiong to become better than Reihana and Sullivan, but it's probably a year early for him.

  • @Stargazer said in 2020 New Zealand U20s:

    Aiden Morgan - Wellington

    Sucks that we lost him, but good pick-up for Wellington.

  • @Stargazer same as Ollie Lewis. He’s a bloody good prospect. Christchurch boys 1st 5 production line.

  • I did not think that Tupou Vai'i was so young.

  • @cgrant said in 2020 New Zealand U20s:

    I did not think that Tupou Vai'i was so young.

    He turns 20 in Jan next year.

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