WaiCoa Bays Stallions coach Morgan Kutia has named a 25-strong squad for the national competition which gets under way this month - with 11 of those players coming from the clubs which contested Saturday's grand final.
Six Hamilton City Tigers players made the cut' so did five from the Ngaruawahia Panthers.
The Stallions, formed from the Upper Central Zone, which is made up of four regions, Waikato, Bay of Plenty, Coastline and Gisborne, finished sixth in the seven-team competition last year and fifth in 2010 when it was reintroduced to the calendar.
Their campaign begins with a pre-season match this weekend against the Counties-Manukau Stingrays in Ngaruawahia, before their first competition game against the Northern Swords in Whangarei on Sunday, August 26.
A feature of this year's competition is televised games on Sky Sport.
Each round will have one Monday night game at Mt Smart Stadium in Auckland which will be broadcast live at 7.20pm, with the Stallions getting their shot in round four on September 17 against defending champions Auckland, who have been renamed the Akarana Falcons.
The final will be shown live on TV, at Mt Smart on Monday, October 15.
WaiCoa Bays Stallions Squad: Marrin Haggie, Mounga Molisi, Ngarotata Bristowe, Namu Puru, John Koko, Josh Weeden, Hayden Karena, Fitu Sili, Pirikawana Taiatini, Tai Pelesasa, Simon Beale, Fa'a Leilua, Nicholas Read, Tane Rapira, Chris Fox, Rawiri Gideon, Vinnie Morunga, Jordan Tai Rakena, Ryan Gordon, Ryan Laurenson, Dana Ratu, Peter Rameka, Raynard Haggie, Moi Pekipaki, Sammy Pritchard.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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