Australia reveals 19-man squad to take on New Zealand in their semi-final clash

Home Sports Australia reveals 19-man squad to take on New Zealand in their semi-final clash
Australia reveals 19-man squad to take on New Zealand in their semi-final clash

Mal Meninga has named his 19-man squad to take on New Zealand in the semi-finals of the Rugby League World Cup.

“Once again it has been extremely difficult to leave out players who have performed very well in our colours,” Meninga said.

Daly Cherry-Evans included in the squad as Ben Hunt returns 

The coach has included Daly Cherry-Evans, despite stating earlier in the week how his preference was to have Ben Hunt and Harry Grant work in tandem in the dummy-half role.

MORE: Wade Graham and Harry Grant weigh into the issues with the Collective Bargaining Agreement

Although his chance of playing looks remote, with only an injury in the next few days likely to see him feature for the Kangaroos. 

The Manly captain’s inclusion comes as somewhat of a surprise, considering Meninga mentioned how he had settled with his starting side and was leaning towards going with a bench full of forwards to try and match it with the Kiwis through the middle.

“He’s been extraordinarily good throughout the whole tour, it’s just difficult to leave him out all the bloody time,” Meninga told SEN.

“Ben- that’s his position now. He’s nine on this tour. It’s no secret that they work well together, Ben and Harry. At this stage, I think both will be playing.”

MORE: Mal Meninga faced with difficult selection decisions ahead of Australia’s clash with New Zealand

Meninga ended up making just two alterations to his side which easily accounted for Lebanon in the quarter finals with Reagan Campbell-Gillard returning from injury to replace Lindsay Collins.

Meanwhile, Hunt takes Campbell Graham’s spot in the squad with the South Sydney centre joining Matt Burton, Jeremiah Nanai, Murray Taulagi and Collins on the sidelines.

“This is our most important game of the World Cup for us and a great challenge against the calibre of the NZ side,” Meninga said. 

“I am happy with our performances so far, but we all know we need to improve.”

Kangaroos team to face New Zealand

Players listed in alphabetical order.

9. Josh Addo-Carr
6. Reagan Campbell-Gillard
13. Patrick Carrigan
2. Daly Cherry-Evans
14. Nathan Cleary
16. Reuben Cotter
17. Angus Crichton
18. Tino Fa’asuamaleaui
20. Harry Grant
4. Valentine Holmes
3. Ben Hunt
21. Liam Martin
8. Latrell Mitchell
7. Cameron Munster
11. Cameron Murray (vc)
1. James Tedesco (capt.)
5. Jake Trbojevic
10. Jack Wighton
24. Isaah Yeo (vc)

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