New Zealand Rugby League head coach Michael Maguire has recalled several senior players to his squad ahead of the end of season test with World Champions Australia and their three test series against England which begins at the end of the month.
The players returning are Former skipper Jesse Bromwich and Kevin Proctor who were sensationally dropped for last years world cup squad due to being caught using cocaine just hours after a test match, while Jesse’s younger brother Kenny, Adam Blair, Gerard Beale and Jordan Rapana are the others included in the 23-man squad.
The seven players all missed the mid season test against England in Denver, which was Maguires first in charge after former coach David Kidwell was sacked after last years poor world cup results in which they failed to reach the semi-finals for the first time since the International tier system was but in place. A massive drop since they were ranked number one in the world only 12 months earlier.
Also included in the squad is five new faces who could all make their Kiwi debuts over the coming six weeks, which include Sydney Roosters grand final winning centre Joseph Manu, Brandon Smith, Corey Harawira-Naere and Isaiah Papali’i
One player who won’t be playing his the newly crowned Dally M player of the year New Zealand Warriors full back Roger Tuivasa-sheck who suffered a leg injury during his club sides play off campaign, while Warriors team mates Issac Luke and Tohu Harris are also missing. While injuries in this weekends Grand final have already ruled out Nelson Asofa-Solomona and Zane Tevevano. It is believed Maguire and his new assistant coach, Kiwi legendary scrum half Stacey Jones will possible name one more addition to the squad.
The Kiwi’s will play Australia in Auckland on 13th October, before embarking on a three test tour of the UK playing England in Hull on Oct 27th, Liverpool 4th Nov and Leeds on the 11th Nov.
New Zealand squad:
Leeson Ah Mau (St George Illawarra), Gerard Beale (NZ Warriors), Adam Blair (NZ Warriors), Jesse Bromwich (Melbourne), Kenny Bromwich (Melbourne), James Fisher-Harris (Penrith), Corey Harawira-Naera (Penrith), Jahrome Hughes (Melbourne), Jamayne Isaako (Brisbane), Shaun Johnson (NZ Warriors), Isaac Liu (Sydney Roosters), Joseph Manu (Sydney Roosters), Esan Marsters (Wests Tigers), Ken Maumalo (NZ Warriors), Kodi Nikorima (Brisbane), Isaiah Papali'i (NZ Warriors), Kevin Proctor (Gold Coast), Jordan Rapana (Canberra), Brandon Smith (Melbourne), Joseph Tapine (Canberra), Martin Tapau (Manly), Jared Waerea-Hargreaves (Sydney Roosters), Dallin Watene-Zelezniak (Penrith).