Newcastle Rugby League: Rebels announce representative squad for 2018

IN: Cessnock’s Paul Carter playing against Western Suburbs at Harker Oval on Sunday. Picture: Jonathan CarrollPaul Carter wasone of three former NRL players named on Monday in the Newcastle Rebels representative squad for 2018.

The 25-year-old, who joined Cessnock this season after a controversial exit from the Sydney Roosters in 2017, will be joined by Central’sTerence Seu Seu and Wests’ Ryan Walker.

Training for the 20-man squad, coached by Phil Williams,is set to start on Wednesday night at Harker Oval ahead of a June 1 clash with a Sydney-based Ron Massey Cup side at Maitland Sportsground.A combined team will then be chosen to tackle the Queensland Rangers later next month.

The announcement comes after three rounds of the Newcastle Rugby League competition.The senior Rebels now reform following ayear on the sidelines when the NSW Country Championships went to under 23s.

Wests had the highest representation of the eight district clubs with five players picked, including debutant Tama Koopu,whileMaitland were the only team to miss out completely. Four spots went to undefeated reigning premiers Macquarie.

SQUAD: Brad Murray, Simon Williams, Terence Seu Seu (Central); Kurt Warden, Paul Carter (Cessnock); Mitch Cullen, Ben Wyborn (Kurri); Kyle Kennedy, Chris Randall, Josh Charles (Lakes); Matt Hay, Randall Briggs, Matt Simon, Simon Allen (Macquarie); Brendan Simpson (Souths); Tama Koopu, James Elias, Matt Herman, Warren Schillings, Ryan Walker (Wests).

Newcastle RL also named an Emerging Rebels under-20 squad on Monday featuring 20 players from all eight district clubs.

Lakes were best represented with eight spots.

Macquarie coach Adam Bettridge will mentor the side, who meet a Penrith development group at home on June 9.

They also start training at Harker Oval on Wednesday night.

SQUAD: Lachlan Bent, Cody Bryant (Central); Connor Kirkwood, Nicholas Lawrence, Harry O’Brien (Cessnock); Reid Alchin, Jordan Mitchell (Kurri); Sam Hibberd, Feleti Mateo, Aaron McGrady, Carl Randall, Emmanuel Sithole, Benjamin Talty, John Toleafoa, Connor Whitaker (Lakes); Jack Cameron, Kye Hopwood, Jack Jordan, Jack Lumby (Macquarie), Jeremy Gibson (Maitland), Lachlan Walmsley (Souths), Manu Matoka (Wests).