NSW U19s v QLD U19s: Standout Performers

NSW U19s prop Jayden Moujalli scored a late try to help NSW U19s fight back from 19-3 down to claim a 29-26 victory over QLD U19s in the opening match of the inaugural U19s National Championships. 

We selected a few players that caught our eye in Brisbane on Sunday.

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Taj Annan (QLD No.12/Easts)

Big, strong ball carrying No.12 with silky skills and a strong presence in defence. There’s plenty to like about Annan, who also kicks conversions. Annan also featured for the Junior Wallabies earlier this year. 

Tom Goddard (NSW No.9/Eastwood)

While his forward pack didn’t always make it easy for him again QLD, NSW No.9 Tom Goddard provided great service and has a quick, clean pass that gave his side plenty of opportunity to attack. 

Clem Haloholo (NSW No.6/Sydney Uni)

Haloholo made his Shute Shield debut earlier this year for the eventual premiers in Sydney and looked like a man playing against boys at times. While he’s still not a finished product, the big lock/backrower’s size is enough to be excited about. 

Harry McLaughlin-Phillips (QLD No.10/Souths)

Playing up a year after also impressing for the Australian Schools and U18s last week, McLaughlin-Phillips continued the form that saw him named as the Premier Rugby Colt of the Year in Brisbane earlier this year. The classy No.10 even claimed a pilfer, which will likely see him expelled from the “Non-Confrontational No.10s Club.”

Harrison Usher (Bond), Noah Hartley (UQ) & Angus Ward (UQ)

The QLD U19s replacement front row dominated at set-piece time at the backend of the match and looked to have earned their side victory after a string of scrum penalties in the final minutes. No.8 John Bryant, from Souths, also did well to control the ball at the back of a scrum driving forward at a rapid pace. 

Jackson Ropata (NSW No.13/Southern Districts) 

NSW centre Jackson Ropata continued his rapid rise, scoring a try and producing another impressive performance in the midfield. Ropata is a product of the Sydney U18s pathway, created to give high school aged students who have left school or are working an apprenticeship an opportunity to earn selection in rep teams. 

Love club rugby? You’ll love the 100 Years of Rugby News coffee table book. Click here to purchase your copy online today!