The Western Force squads for the 2023 Super Rugby Men’s U19 and U16 competitions have today been announced.
The five-team development pathway competitions will run from Saturday 30 September to Sunday 5 November, showcasing the next generation of Australian talent and providing them opportunities in the pinnacle of domestic age group rugby.
The Force and RugbyWA have joined forces in 2023 for the under-age competitions, offering the state’s emerging talent a valuable insight within the Super Rugby Pacific club.
The wider training squads for both teams, drawn from WA club and school rugby talent pools, have been training for the past two months. The U19 and U16 groups have now been narrowed down to 31-player and 29-player squads respectively for the six-week competitions.
The Force U19s will be led by Fortescue Academy Head Coach Dylan Parsons, alongside Assistant Coaches Jeremy Thrush, Colin Phillips and Ian Prior.
Parsons said: “We’re really excited to get to this stage and select our competition squad. Round 1 is just around the corner and we can’t wait to see the hard work over the last couple months be shown in the upcoming games.
“The program so far has been all around showing the players what a High Performance environment looks like and now how to manage the demands of a Performance competition that includes travel, review/preview and backing up performances week to week.”
The Force U16s will be led by Head Coach Denis Skillen supported by Assistant Coach Jerard Saunders and Development Coach Gavin Laycock.
Skillen said: “We have a very talented U16 Force squad, who have been dedicating themselves to honing their skills and improving their fitness over the past eight weeks. Skill development and physical conditioning are fundamental in the team's preparation.
“The enthusiasm that the team and coaching staff have for the upcoming challenges and opportunities is fantastic. It’s with this kind of attitude and mindset that is invaluable and often paves the way for personal growth and success in sports and beyond.”
The Force’s opening games of the Super Rugby U19 and U16 season are on Saturday September 30 against the Melbourne Rebels at Revo Fitness Stadium in Claremont.
Watch every game live and on-demand via Stan Sport.
Aiden Voute (Southern Lions), AJ Preketes (Eastern Suburbs (Sydney)), Benjamin Farrow (UWA), Ben Kershaw (Wellington (NZ)), Billy Turnbull (Cottesloe), Brennen Leef (Southern Lions), Brody Mainwaring (Wanneroo), Dane Sawers (Kalamunda), Doug Phillipson (Palmyra), Dylan Bronlund (UWA), James Blair (Kalamunda), Jehmial Ross (Nedlands), Josiah Marks (Joondalup Brothers), Kaea Rangiuia (Joondalup Brothers), Kauri Grace (Wests Scarborough), Kelton New (Associates), Kian Saus (Wanneroo), Liam Jones (Joondalup Brothers), Luke Holt-Brown (Perth Bayswater), Manaia TeTana (Wanneroo), Oakley Pearce (Joondalup Brothers), Ollie Cummins (Palmyra), Reece Pedley (Joondalup Brothers), Ronan Leahy (Fortescue Academy), Rueben Baker (Wanneroo), Stirling McDonald (Nedlands), Thomas Crofts (Wanneroo), Tiam Toufan (UWA), Zac Landsman (Palmyra), Zak Griffiths (Southern Lions), Zavier Hawira (Palmyra)
Alexander Smit (Joondalup Brothers), Ashford Taumoepeau (North Coast), Cassius Dougal (Nedlands), Ceejay Patelesiosio (Southern Lions), Chase Bunce (Nedlands), Christian Huey (Southern Lions), Conan Thiedeman (Southern Lions), Cruz Remi (Nedlands), Dermott Arthy (North Coast), Dozion Laupama (Kalamunda), Ezekiel Jackson (Nedlands), Felix Cooper (Trinity College), Gideon Weleilakeba (Southern Lions), Harrison Etchells (North Coast), Harry Oddy (Southern Lions), Hunter Pascoe (North Coast), Israel Tupou (Southern Lions), Joshua Harmer (Christchurch Grammar School), Josiah Tanonef (Southern Lions), Kalani Chong Sue (Christchurch Grammar School), Kristian Bellekom (Scotch College), Luke Megson (Scotch College), Paddy Woods (Hale School), Peni Naqau (Southern Lions), Samiuela Likio (Mandurah Pirates), Taj Makene (Nedlands), Tamarangi Tunui (Wanneroo), Xander Goh (North Coast), Zane Wesley (Wanneroo)
Round 1 – Saturday September 30, Revo Fitness Stadium, Claremont
Western Force U16s v Melbourne Rebels U16s, 11:40am
Western Force U19s v Melbourne Rebels U19s, 1:20pm
Round 2 – Sunday October 8, Ballymore
Queensland Reds U16s v Western Force U16s, 12:05pm
Queensland Reds U19s v Western Force U19s, 1:45pm
Round 3 – BYE Weekend
Round 4 – Saturday October 21, Revo Fitness Stadium, Claremont
Western Force U16s v ACT Brumbies U16s, 12:05pm
Western Force U19s v ACT Brumbies U19s, 1:45pm
Round 5 – Sunday October 29, Forshaw Rugby Park, NSW
NSW Waratahs U16s v Western Force U16s, 11:40pm
NSW Waratahs U19s v Western Force U19s, 1:20pm
Grand Final – Sunday November 5 [Venue TBC]
*All times local