Skipper Manu believes the Wildfires are connected to the game’s world stage

By MARK CASHMAN

Playing elite level rugby in what they refer to in Newcastle as “God’s country” with its magnificent beaches and vibrant lifestyle has always been part of the pitch for emerging talents to come and try their luck at the Hunter Wildfires.

There’s been some flashes of promise at the Wildfires over the past 18 months but their skipper Carl Manu knew that the good people of the Hunter were on to something special during the July series of Test matches in New Zealand involving Samoa and Tonga.