2023 Magpies Squad Release

The Hawkes Bay Rugby Union are delighted to announce the 2023 Magpies Squad for the Bunnings Warehouse NPC. The team features a great mix of experience with many of the players having performed exceptionally in the Black and White Jersey over the last few seasons but also a mix of fresh faces who will add to the team and have bright futures ahead of them.


“We have some great consistency with the guys returning from the 2022 season as well as some exciting young talent currently with the New Zealand Under 20's. Add to that some experienced recruits to reinforce some key positions makes for an exciting campaign.“ Said Head Coach, Brock James.


With the retirements of Jason Long and Namatahi Waa last season due to injury Brock James and his coaching staff have recruited Isa Tau’ungafasi and Issac Salmon, both have experience in Super Rugby and provincial level with Tasman who will add depth to the front row stocks. It's also awesome to see Tim Farrell return to the Magpies team after a couple of seasons away from representative rugby.


A couple of young locks join the tight forwards with HB Academy and NZ U20 representatives Hunter Morrison and Tom Allen being selected for the first time. Another Academy member and NZ U20 rep is loose forward Cooper Flanders who joins older brother Devan in the side,  Patrick Tuifua has earnt selection from a strong club rugby season for Hastings R&S.  


Moana Pasifika squad member half-back Sam Wye joins the squad as well as outside back Paula Balekana who is the 2023 MLR competition top try scorer whilst playing for the New England Free Jacks this season.  


You will notice some familiar faces missing from previous Magpies squads with several players expected to be selected for Samoa or Tonga in the Rugby World Cup and its likely more players will be added to the squad over the next couple of weeks. Players signed to the Magpies such as Brodie Rettalick, Brad Weber, Folau Fakatava, Joe Apikotoa, and Anzelo Tuitavuki have all recently been selected for the All Blacks and Tonga respectively so could still be named in world cup squads, if not then will be running out in a Magpies jersey on the 5th August against North Harbour at McLean Park.

Article added: Wednesday 05 July 2023


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