Wattles and Dalby lead Battalion charge
RUGBY LEAGUE: They knocked off the reigning premiers on the weekend, and now a core group of Wattles Warriors have been tasked with the duty of keeping 47th Battalion glory in Toowoomba.
Five Warriors were named yesterday in the squad to suit up for the carnival, as the Clydesdales look to hold home turf in May.
Halfback Matt Duggan will join teammates Ty Gardner, Mitch Koina, Jackson Green and Dale Perkins in the 19-man squad.
Dalby were the next-best represented side, with captain Steve Franciscus, Jason Wardrop, Xavier Manley and Alex Ambia earning selection.
Wattles president Glyn Rees said the side had been working hard to get to where they are, and was overjoyed with the selection of the five.
"Right from day one, coach Travis (Burns) has been impressed with the boys, with their attitude to training and the standard of training," Rees said.
"Over time it was about transferring that into a real match experience. It was taking a little bit of time, but the abundance of talent was there.
"The five players selected have been a little bit regular in representative teams, so it's not a surprise to see five of that calibre selected."
Rees said the club was proud to be so heavily involved in an event the magnitude of the 47th Battalion.
"It is a historically significant event. We're proud not only of the players selected, but the people involved in something that is such a special league icon across many years," he said.
"Especially playing on home turf. It's no different for any of the boys, to play in front of family and friends, it adds to the special moment.
"They'll certainly lift for the occasion, and I'm sure Toowoomba will perform very strongly."
The Valleys Fillies dominated selection for the South West Mustangs side, with 17 of the 19 players selected.
Former Australian Jillaroo front rower Steph Hancock (Souths Magpies) and Belynda Cheyne (Normanby) are the non-Fillies in the team.
Hancock opted to represent the Mustangs, as she aims to earn selection for the first ever women's State of Origin series this year.
Molly O'Connell will form a key part of the team, coming off the back of some exceptional form in the A-grade BRL competition.
The side will also be boosted by the addition of 17-year-old Reeghyn Beardmore, who will line up in the hooking role.
Emily Young will take up a leadership role in the halves, with the in-form Kirilee Sires to wear the number one jersey.
To view the Clydesdales and Mustangs sides, click here.