AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - OCTOBER 13: Shaun Johnson of the Kiwis celebrates with James Fisher-Harris after winning the international Rugby League Test Match between the New Zealand Kiwis and the Australia Kangaroos at Mt Smart Stadium on October 13, 2018 in Auckland, New Zealand. (Photo by Hannah Peters/Getty Images)

New Zealand has named a 16-man squad for the upcoming World Cup Nines tournament, with six rookies a chance to get their first taste of international action.

Parramatta’s Dylan Brown, Canberra’s Bailey Simonsson, Canterbury trio Corey Harawira-Naera, Jeremy Marshall-King and Reimis Smith and Cronulla’s Braden Hamlin-Uele could all debut during the two-day tournament at Bankwest Stadium on October 18-19 in Sydney.

“This is a hugely exciting opportunity for the whole group playing in the World Cup Nines,” coach Michael Maguire told

“I’m especially excited for the new players we’ve been able to bring into the group.

“We’ve got players right across this squad who have come off terrific NRL seasons and have earned the privilege to represent New Zealand. For us, this is another step towards taking the Kiwi jersey to the place we want it to be.”

New Zealand’s Nines squad

LEESON AH MAU (Vodafone Warriors)

DYLAN BROWN (Parramatta Eels)

JAMES FISHER-HARRIS (Penrith Panthers)

COREY HARAWIRA-NAERA (Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs)

BRADEN HAMLIN-UELE (Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks)

JAMAYNE ISAAKO (Brisbane Broncos)

SHAUN JOHNSON (Cronulla Sutherland Sharks)

JEREMY MARSHALL-KING (Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs)

KEN MAUMALO (Vodafone Warriors)

BRITON NIKORA (Cronulla Sutherland Sharks)

KODI NIKORIMA (Vodafone Warriors)

KEVIN PROCTOR (Gold Coast Titans)

JORDAN RAPANA (Canberra Raiders)

BAILEY SIMONSSON (Canberra Raiders)

REIMIS SMITH (Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs)

JOSEPH TAPINE (Canberra Raiders)


  1. Pretty average team.
    RTS would be sick have him over Remis Smith.
    Alex Glenn over Kevin Proctor, Glenn is fasted and more in form.
    Nelson Asofa-Solomona over Lesson Ah Mau, hes way more mobile and plus more impact bigger and stronger.
    Brandon Smith over Jeremy Marshall-King, Smith is much better on defence and is crafty on attack. Also can play as a forward
    Benji Marshall over Shaun Johnson. Shaun is overrated and Benji is playing better footy simple as that. He also can cover hooker too.

    1. RTS
    2. Maumalo
    3. Rapana
    4. Hughes
    5. Marshall
    6. JFH
    7. NAS
    8. Tapine
    9. Smith

    10. Simonsson
    11. Isaako
    12. Brown
    13. Nikorima
    14. Hamlin-Uele
    15. Glenn
    16. Nikora

    I’ve gone for a big strong starting line up with the backs able to get good early meters and big middle forwards to set the tempo. Off the bench you have more mobile forwards so as the games goes on hopefully you can lift the speed of the game. BHU is the big body impact forward. Brown and Nikorima cover halves and hooker, Brandon Smith can move into a lock position if you want to play smaller and faster. Isaako and Simonsson cover the backs

  2. Very average team in my eyes going to be very reliant on Shaun Johnson though he is should be used to that playing for the warriors.

    Don’t think big strong wingers are useful in Nines as the nrl Nines proved speed on the edge is a real asset in the comp.

    RTS and NAS not included is a real head scratcher whether it’s because they said no to off season comps or even the possibility of playing for Samoa, either way is a massive for the kiwis in this comp

  3. Benji would been awesome for 9s
    Yeah speed was great for nines but Maumalo is such a good set starter and Rapanas darts from dummy half also to start sets are really good. Having speed on attack out wide is great but to start you off strongly I’d prefer these two.

  4. Yer him and Johnson would have been good together also Brandon smith running from dummy half.

    If they weren’t going to pick RTS I can’t believe they didn’t go for CNK or Jahrome Hughes both would of been better options for fullback then Isaako

    I agree about Rapana but maumalo is definitely suited to the 13 man game. Defensively he will be found out especially against any players who are known as being fast. Though his start of sets still will be strong assets on the attacking side they won’t be as impactful or important the. In the 13 man game

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