With all the talk of possible Origin selections, the upcoming Anzac test match between the Kangaroos and the Kiwis seems to be slightly overlooked.

The majority of the Kangaroos side picks itself, however reports seems to indicate there could be a selection surprise or two.

I’ve decided to take a slightly different look at the situation rather than just naming the 17 men I’d take into the clash.

Below is the 17 I expect to be selected, and also the player who should be chosen if it were selected purely on form. The player I believe will be selected is the first player named, while the player I would choose on form is in brackets.

As always, opinions are welcome as to who the form player is, who should be selected, and who you would select.

For the record I didn’t take too much notice of left and right hand centre and winger as the players likely to be chosen will play out of position anyways, and at this level players should be able to play either side of the field.

Fullback: Greg Inglis (James Tedesco)

James Tedesco is one of the form players of the competition, even in a losing side, but he will likely be overlooked for the experience of Greg Inglis. Inglis, who isn’t having the best of seasons and looks like he may be playing injured, has all the experience in the world and won’t let anyone down. He’s pretty much an automatic selection in any side in the world and you’d be crazy to think otherwise. That being said, Tedesco’s day will come, and right now I’d go so far as to say he is the premier fullback in the game.

Wingers: Semi Radradra and Darius Boyd (Corey Oates and Darius Boyd)

Straight up, I don’t believe Radradra should be available for selection, but he is, and as the best winger in the world earns his spot. On the other wing, Darius Boyd deserves selection. Boyd could arguably play fullback such has been his form, but if Inglis is picked, he earns a spot on the wing. Form wise, Corey Oates is having a pearler of a season thus far and will likely earn an Origin jersey in a few weeks-time. SKD and Jordan Rapana are the other form wingers, however are both New Zealanders. Boyd’s form warrants selection, even out of position.

Centres: Michael Jennings and Josh Morris (Michael Jennings and Justin O’Neill)

Jennings and Radradra will form the left hand side while Josh Morris will likely partner Darius Boyd on the right. Jennings has been one of the form centres of the competition, and deserves his expected selection. Will Chambers injury has opened the door for Josh Morris, whose experience will probably see him edge out a debutant. Justin O’Neill is arguably the most underrated player on a brilliant Cowboys roster and has been quietly going about his business as usual. He’ll be battling with Dane Gagai for an Origin spot.

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Halves: Johnathan Thurston and Cooper Cronk (Anthony Milford and Johnathan Thurston)

This is an automatic selection and cannot be argued. Cronk and Thurston have formed the most dominant representative halves pairing in modern time. That being said, I’d argue that Anthony Milford is the form half of the competition, with Thurston in at second. Milford beats out the likes of his club partner Hunt and Morgan, and even Cronk, in terms of performances thus far in 2016. Luckily for NSW he won’t represent QLD this year, however the Kiwis might not dodge that bullet, although any appearance would have to come from the bench.

Front Rowers: Matt Scott and James Tamou (Dylan Napa and Andrew Fifita)

An injury to Aaron Woods means the Cowboys bookends will be named as starting props, and you can’t begrudge either of them their starting spot. Both men are rep mainstays and still amongst the best in the business. On form though, no one is burning brighter than Roosters young gun Dylan Napa. He won’t play Origin, but I’d find a spot for him in this side without a doubt. Fifita has been a man mountain in the Shire for the Sharks after reeling in the mistakes and penalties and has earned the right to be in the reckoning for a return to rep duties.

Back Rowers: Gavin Cooper and Beau Scott (Ethan Lowe and Beau Scott)

I expect the Cowboys connection to see Cooper selected on the run on side, where he will be partnered by hitman Beau Scott. This may change as the players I’ve named on the bench can easily be swapped, however this is who I believe will start. Scott and Cooper are two of the form back rowers although I’d place Cooper’s fellow Cowboy Ethan Lowe slightly ahead in terms of form. Cooper is yet to play for Australia however I don’t think an international cap is too far off. Scott is amongst the rep mainstays and is having a brilliant start to 2016.

Lock: Paul Gallen (Corey Parker)

I don’t think Gallen will be overlooked despite talk that he hasn’t been contacted by Mal Meninga yet. He is the premier lock in the modern game and has led the way at both an Origin and international level for years. Although he has been brilliant for the Sharks since his return, I’d say Parker is the form Aussie number 13 right now. For the record Taumalolo is probably the main man in terms of impact, although Parker offers more over the journey. Both men are workhorses capable of busting a game open with an offload. Either/or, you won’t lose anything either way, and both will be there regardless of which position they’re named in.

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Hooker: Cameron Smith (Michael Ennis)

There is absolutely no chance in the world that Smith doesn’t get selected if fit, but Michael Ennis is arguably the form Australian hooker in the competition right now. He sits second on the Dally M leader board and has led the line for the Sharks during their impressive run. Smith, although he has yet to set the world on fire, has been brilliant also, and will be the first player picked once again.

Bench: Sam Thaiday, Corey Parker, Trent Merrin, Anthony Milford (Trent Merrin, Josh McGuire, Paul Vaughan, Josh Dugan)

This will be tough to explain, but Thaiday, Parker, and Merrin will be in this side somewhere, whether it be from the bench or in the run on side. I believe Milford will be selected as the impact player, which Meninga likes to employ. I haven’t named Milford here and I believe he is the form half and thus was named in the run on side. Due to Milford being named there, Josh Dugan has shown the best form of players capable of filling in this utility position. Merrin deserves a spot here also after a brilliant start to his Panthers career. Josh McGuire has been brilliant off the bench at Brisbane as has Paul Vaughan in the nation’s capital. Both are genuine impact players and wouldn’t look out of position. Both will likely play Origin but miss out here.

Expected 17

  1. Greg Inglis
  2. Semi Radradra
  3. Michael Jennings
  4. Josh Morris
  5. Darius Boyd
  6. Johnathan Thurston
  7. Cooper Cronk
  8. Matt Scott
  9. Cameron Smith
  10. James Tamou
  11. Beau Scott
  12. Gavin Cooper
  13. Paul Gallen
    INTERCHANGE
  14. Corey Parker
  15. Sam Thaiday
  16. Trent Merrin
  17. Anthony Milford

Form 17

  1. James Tedesco
  2. Corey Oates
  3. Michael Jennings
  4. Justin O’Neill
  5. Darius Boyd
  6. Anthony Milford
  7. Johnathan Thurston
  8. Dylan Napa
  9. Michael Ennis
  10. Andrew Fifita
  11. Beau Scott
  12. Ethan Lowe
  13. Corey Parker
    INTERCHANGE
  14. Trent Merrin
  15. Josh McGuire
  16. Paul Vaughan
  17. Josh Dugan

47 COMMENTS

    • Hahaha – there are several players listed in both – but I know what you mean – Australia vs Australia A. And I would be chearing for the underdog! 🙂

  1. Put Tedesco in at Fullback, and have (the injured and misfiring) GI on the bench to fill any position 1 through 7 (Morgan unlucky to miss out on this position). Leave Semi out (on principle!). Mal not to pick Milford out of respect for Kevvie/QLD. Smith to get the nod over Ennis for Hooker and play the full game without a backup (but surely Ennis over Farrah for SOO). Parker over Gallen for 13. The rest will work itself out. Just my 2 cents…

  2. Inglis
    Radradra
    Jennings
    Dugan
    Boyd
    Thurston
    Cronk
    M Scott
    Smith (c)
    Fafita
    B Scott
    Bird
    Gallen

    Parker
    Cooper
    Milford
    Napa

  3. I hope mal meninga upholds the bans on the maroons. Even in the 4 nations. I don’t care if it seems fair or not. The idiots won’t break a curfew again. A guy like Dylan Napa has basically burned $150,000 in rep payments plus rep bonuses from the roosters because he didn’t go to bed when he was told. Maybe if guys like Pearce had that happen to him he wouldn’t have all these problems now.

  4. No more debuts. .for the Kangaroos and the Blues. Need experience.

    Kangaroos

    1.Darius Boyd
    2.Josh Mansour
    3.Josh Morris
    4.Greg Inglis
    5.Josh Dugan
    6.JothathonThurston
    7.Cooper Cronk
    8.Matt Scott
    9.Cameron Smith
    10.James Tamou
    11.Matt Gillett
    12.Sam Thaiday
    13.Corey Parker

    14.Greg Bird
    15.Paul Gallen
    16.Luke Lewis
    17.David Klemmer

    • Swap Tamou and Gallen, send Gillett to the Bench and bring in Birdy, replace Lewis with Morgan/Utility.

      Boyd/Dugan
      Mansour
      GI
      Morris
      Dugan/Boyd
      Thurston
      Cronk
      Scott
      Smith
      Gallen
      Birdy
      Thiaday
      Parker

      Morgan/(Milford/Utility that can play Half/Backrow)
      Gillett
      Tamou
      Klemmer

  5. It’s a joke that Semi & Tamou are allowed to play Australia, it’s just greed chasing origin money!

    Kiwi:

    1. Tui Lolohea
    2. Curtis Rona
    3. Peta Hiku
    4. Shaun Kenny-Dowall
    5. Dallin Watene-Zelezniak
    6. Keiran Foran (C)
    7. Shaun Johnson
    8. Jesse Bromwich
    9. Isaak Luke
    10. Adam Blair
    11. Alex Glenn
    12. Kevin Proctor
    13. Jason Taumalolo
    —- —- —- —-
    14. Lewis Brown
    15. Martin Taupau
    16. Tohu Harris
    17. Ben Matulino
    18. Manu Ma’au

  6. I think for a stronger team they should pick Tedesco at fullback and put Inglis in the centres:
    1. Tedesco
    2. Radrardra
    3. Inglis
    4. Gagai
    5. Boyd/Mansour
    6. Thurston
    7. Cronk
    8. Scott
    9. Smith
    10. Tamou
    11. Papali
    12. Gillett
    13. Parker
    14. Milford
    15. McGuire
    16. Fifita
    17. Lowe

  7. I reckon Aussie should blood some younger guys, they have too many players picked on reputation and name rather than form. Has beens like Beau Scott, Ryan Hoffman and Paul Gallen shouldn’t even come into consideration. Semi shouldn’t be eligible but if he is, you can’t not pick him when he’s one of the best wingers. This is my team for Aussie and NZ-

    Aussie

    1. Darius Boyd
    2. Corey Oates
    3. Greg Inglis
    4. Josh Dugan
    5. Semi Radradra
    6. Johnathon Thurston
    7. Cooper Cronk
    8. Josh McGuire
    9. Cameron Smith
    10. Matt Scott
    11. Sam Thaiday
    12. Matt Gillett
    13. Corey Parker

    14. Michael Morgan
    15. James Tamou
    16. Dylan Napa
    17. Andrew Fifita

    Kiwis

    1. Jordan Kahu
    2. Dallin Watene-Zelezniak
    3. Peta Hiku
    4. Shaun Kenny-Dowall
    5. Manu Vatuvei
    6. Kieran Foran
    7. Shaun Johnson
    8. Jesse Bromwich
    9. Isaac Luke
    10. Adam Blair
    11. Simon Mannering
    12. Kevin Proctor
    13. Jason Taumololo

    14. Martin Taupau
    15. Thou Harris
    16. Ben Matulino
    17. Kodi Nikorima

  8. Milford can’t be picked because he broke the origin curfew. Meninga has said he will carry Kevvies punishment in to the roos selection as well.

  9. To be honest, this is a bit of a silly article.

    Lets compare something I have made up verses something I have guessed at.

  10. Australia
    1. James Tedesco
    2. Semi Radradra (not an eels supporter)
    3. Michael Jennings (not an eels supporter)
    4. GI
    5. Darius Boyd
    6. JT
    7. Cooper Cronk
    8. Matt Scott
    9. Cameron Smith
    10. James Tamou
    11. Greg Bird
    12. Beau Scott
    13. Corey Parker

    14. Morgan/Milford
    15. G-Train
    16. Sam Thaiday
    17. Trent Merrin

    NZ
    1. Tuimoala Lolohea
    2. Curtis Rona
    3. SKD
    4. Peta Hiku
    5. Manu Vatuvei
    6. Kieran Foran
    7. Shaun Johnson
    8. Jesse Bromwich
    9. Isaac Luke
    10. Adam Blair
    11. Simon Mannering
    12. Kevin Proctor
    13. Taumalolo

    14. Thomas Leulai
    15. Martin Taupau
    16. Tohu Harris
    17. Ben Mautalino

    • Got a feeling Rona might miss out with Hiku moving to wing and Kata to centre who is currently on fire. The rest I pretty much agree with although there might be a toss up between Blair and Glenn with Blair maybe having the upper hand so far.

    • Hit nail on the head mate. That would be my exact N.Z side bar Kahu for Rona. Kahu will be there I think Kearney being at brisbane and all.

  11. Lol Gavin Cooper to play for Australia, I highly doubt that.
    1. Inglis
    2. Radradra
    3. Jennings
    4. Dugan
    5. Boyd
    6. Thurston
    7. Cronk
    8. Scott
    9. Smith
    10. Tamou
    11. Bird
    12. Parker
    13. Gallen
    —————–
    14. Morgan
    15. Fifita
    16. Scott
    17. Thaiday

  12. If I was to pick on form and experience it would be
    1 Tedesco
    2 Boyd
    3 Jennings
    4 Roberts
    5 Oates
    6 Thurston
    7 Cronk
    8Fifita
    9 Smith
    10 McGuire
    11 Napa
    12 Gillett
    13 Parker
    14 De Bellin
    15 James
    16 Aubbason
    17 J Bird.

  13. Kiwis:
    1 Tuimoala Lolahea
    2 Dallain Watene-Zelezniak
    3 Shaun Kenny-Dewell
    4 Peta Hiku
    5 Curtis Rona/Antonio Winterstein
    6 Kieran Foran
    7 Shaun Johnson
    8 Jesse Bromwich
    9 Isaac Luke
    10 Adam Blair
    11 Tohu Harris
    12 Martin Taupau
    13 Jason Taumalolo

    14 Alex Glenn/Kodi Nikorima
    15 Sam Kasiano
    16 Ben Matulino
    17 Kevin Proctor

  14. 1. Tedesco
    2. Morris
    3. Dugan
    4. Boyd
    5. Mansour
    6. Milford
    7. Thurston
    8. Scott
    9. Smith
    10. Tamou
    11. Lowe
    12. Gillett
    13. Parker
    14. Oates
    15. Fifita
    16. Gallen
    17. Maguire

  15. My team would look like this,

    1: D. Boyd
    2: C. Oats
    3: M. Jennings
    4: J. Roberts
    5: V Holmes
    6: A. Milford
    7: J. Thurston
    8: M. Scott
    9: C. Smith
    10. J. Tamou
    11: B. Cartwright
    12: M. Gillett
    13: C. Parker
    14: G. Bird
    15: D. Klemmer
    16: P. Vaughan
    17: A. Fafita

  16. My kiwi team would be this based on this weeks team list.

    1: T. Lolohea
    2: D. W. Z
    3: S. K. D
    4: P. Hiku
    5: M. Vatuvai
    6: K. Foran
    7: S. Johnson
    8: J. Bromwitch
    9: I. Luke
    10: B. Matulino
    11: S. Mannering
    12: T. Harris
    13: J. Taumalolo
    14: T. Leuluai
    15: J. Paulo
    16: A. Blair
    17: M. Taupau

  17. I’d have Boyd at fullback simply because he’s a classier player

    1. Boyd
    2. Oates
    3. Jennings
    4. O’Neill
    5. Tedesco
    6. Thurston
    7. Cronk
    8. Scott
    9. Smith (wish I could say Ennis)
    10. Tamou
    11. Graham
    12. Scott
    13. Parker
    14. Milford (imagine how deadly his impact would be coming off the bench)
    15. Gillett
    16. Fifita
    17. Mc’Guire

  18. 1. Nightingale/Hiku/Tui/DWZ
    2. Curtis Rona
    3. Jordan Kahu
    4. Shaun Kenny-Dowell
    5. Manu Vatuvei
    6. Keiran Foran
    7. Shaun Johnson
    8. Jesse Bromwhich
    9. Issac Luke
    10. Adam Blair
    11. Kevin Proctor
    12. Simon Mannering
    13. Jason Taumalolo

    14. Tohu Harris
    15. Ben Matalino
    16. Alex Glenn
    17. Martin Taupau

    1. James Tredesco
    2. Josh Mansour
    3. Micheal Jennings
    4. Greg Ingles
    5. Darius Boyd
    6. Jonothan Thurston
    7. Cooper Cronk
    8. Paul Gallen
    9. Robbie Farah
    10. James Tamou
    11. Beau Scott
    12. Greg Bird
    13. Corey Parker

    14. Anthony Milford
    15. Matt Scott/Andrew Fifita
    16. Sam Thaiday
    17. Gillett/Cooper/Merrin/Cordner

  19. Radradra its a joke anyone would think of him in a Aussie or a nsw jersey. I feel sorry for the young Aussie players who’s waiting to get a crack . And some PNG bloke comes an takes his spot. Its a bigger joke an the refs in the game.

  20. Surely a time comes when people just aren’t playing good enough. Greg Inglis is looking very beverage this year whether injured or not, can’t always pick on past performance especially now Aus not 1 team anymore, need to ease the changeover in? So bring in Tedesco now, Milford for Cronk next time and slowly blood the young ones

    • I agree, all it would take is for Bennett to get England a 4 Nations win in November and we could be looking at an Australia ranking of 3rd by year end. We have to start building the next team that will continue the dynasty and not let it suffer the indignity of failure in old age.

  21. Ur kidding saffron. Manu is the first name u put down his defence is ok not good not bad. With good players inside him he only has to stay on his man. He is the best winger 1 on 1 5 meters out u DON’T stop him. His carries out of our red zone are better than any player in the comp,bar none. Hes good on attacking bombs, ok on defensive bombs. I’d have him over any winger in the comp bar maybe semi.

  22. Hey guys who would be in your team of the year so far (i know we are only at round 8 but im curious) you have to use at least 1 player from each team, then the last player can be from any team. mine would be like this:
    Coote – Cowboys
    Barba – Sharks
    Gagai – Knights
    Oates – Broncos
    Tedesco – Tigers
    Milford – Broncos
    Norman – Eels
    Kasiano – Bulldogs
    Hodgson – Raiders
    Napa – Roosters
    Cartwright – Panthers
    Hoffman – Warriors
    S Burgess – Rabbitohs
    Bench
    Koroisau – Sea Eagles
    Paasi – Titans
    De Belin – Dragons
    K Bromwich – Storm

    Some of my selections are purely based on what i’ve heard, like dragons, knights, rabbitohs, sea eagles and warriors so dont judge my selections too harshly, but what do you guys think.

    • J Tedesco: Tigers
      B Barba: Sharks
      J Dugan: Dragons
      S Kata: Warriors
      D Gagai: Knights
      A Milford: Broncos
      J Thurston: Cowboys
      J Graham: Bulldogs
      J Hodgson: Raiders
      J Bromwich: Storm
      B Cartwright: Panthers
      B Scott: Eels
      S Burgess: Rabbitohs
      M Aubbuson: Roosters
      R James: Titans
      J Trbojevic: Sea Eagles
      T Trbojevic: Sea Eagles

    • 1. James Tedesco (Tigers)
      2. Semi Radradra (Eels)
      3. Josh Dugan (Dragons)
      4. Solomone Kata (Warriors)
      5. Dane Gagai (Knights)
      6. Anthony Milford (Broncos)
      7. Johnathan Thurston (Cowboys)
      8. Jesse Bromwich (Storm)
      9. Josh Hodgson (Raiders)
      10. James Graham (Bulldogs)
      11. Greg Bird (Titans)
      12. Bryce Cartwright (Panthers)
      13. Sam Burgess (Rabbitohs)

      14. Ben Barba (Sharks)
      15. Jake Trbojevic (Sea Eagles)
      16. Matt Gillett (Broncos)
      17. Dylan Napa (Roosters)

  23. All these NZ sides and not 1 has the ever reliable Jason Nightingale. Not being biased but this bloke plays with heart every week and never lets any side down.
    He is the incumbent winger and surely deserves his spot in front of Rona and Winterstien etc?? From a greedy perspective I hope he isn’t picked but surely deserves to be…

  24. I don’t see the problem with Semi being picked. I would prefer for him to play for Fiji, but if he was to, or has become, an Australian citizen he should be allowed to play for his adopted country.

    The argument that he cannot play Origin and therefore should not be picked for Australia is absurd. As the game becomes more national there will be very talented players coming out of States other than QLD and NSW. What will happen when the Storm unearths a Victorian star and depending on requirements, may not be eligible. Same if/when the game expand to WA.

    I think we need to get used to the idea that the game is outgrowing QLD and NSW.

  25. Australia vs Australia B
    1. Inglis
    2. Boyd
    3. J Morris
    4. Jennings
    5. Dugan
    6. Thurston
    7. Cronk
    8. Scott
    9. Smith
    10. Tamou
    11. G Bird
    12. B Scott
    13. Parker
    14. Morgan
    15. Gallen
    16. Merrin
    17. Thaiday

    1. Tedesco
    2. Radradra
    3. O Niell
    4. Roberts
    5. Oates
    6. Milford
    7. Hunt
    8. McGuire
    9. McCullough
    10. Fifita
    11. Gillett
    12. Cooper
    13. Lowe
    14. Granville
    15. Klemmer
    16. Napa
    17. R James
    This would be one game I’d pay to watch

  26. AUSTRALIA
    1. Darius Boyd
    2. Semi Radradra
    3. Greg Inglis
    4. Josh Dugan
    5. Blake Ferguson
    6. Johnathan Thurston
    7. Cooper Cronk
    8. Matt Scott
    9. Cameron Smith (c)
    10. James Tamou
    11. Greg Bird
    12. Matt Gillett
    13. Corey Parker

    14. Michael Morgan
    15. Josh McGuire
    16. Sam Thaiday
    17. Josh Papalii

    NEW ZEALAND
    1. Tuimoala Lolohea
    2. Jordan Kahu
    3. Peta Hiku
    4. Shaun Kenny-Dowall
    5. Manu Vatuvei
    6. Kieran Foran
    7. Shaun Johnson
    8. Jesse Bromwich
    9. Issac Luke
    10. Ben Matulino
    11. Kevin Proctor
    12. Simon Mannering (c)
    13. Jason Taumalolo

    14. Sam Kasiano
    15. Adam Blair
    16. Tohu Harris
    17. Kodi Nikorima

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