THEY rank amongst the finest rugby union exponents to have pulled on the Saint Stanislaus’ College colours and now Hunter Ward, Bo Abra and Yool Yool are rated amongst Australia’s best under 20s.
The three Stannies graduates have been named in the 87-player Junior Wallabies training squad from which a national side will be selected to attend both Oceania and World Under 20s Championships next year.
The members of the squad were selected on the basis of their club form as well as impressive showings in tournaments such as the Australian Schools tri-nations series and the inaugural Under 19s Rugby Championship (URC).
“From here the boys will be linking up with their state-based academies where they will continue to train until we assemble in January at the Australian Institute of Sport where our preparations will really ramp up,” Junior Wallabies head coach Jason Gilmore said.
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All three have plenty of representative experience already.
Abra, who captained Stannies’ first XV to an undefeated campaign in 2017, has played for the Australian Schoolboys side, has been in the NSW Generation Blue’s under 19s squad and this year represented NSW Country at the URC. The prop plays club rugby for Eastern Suburbs.
Both Ward and Yool Yool were in the same NSW Country squad for the URC, while the duo represent Manly in club rugby.
Ward has previously played for both the NSW under 20s and opens sides at the National Sevens Championship, while Yool has played state sevens too.
Adrian Thompson, Rugby Australia’s head of national talent management, is looking forward to see what the Stannies graduates and their fellow hopefuls and produce while pushing for final selection.
“Our 87-strong squad comes off the back of the URC and elite representative rugby seasons where we have been able to identify and capture a lot of talented players,” he said.
“Working with the state academies we’re looking forward to seeing how these players continue to develop as move through the under 20s calendar year.”
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