by Lorraine Genia – EM TV Sports, Port Moreby
After three weeks of trials, the PNG Rugby Football Union has confirmed a 26 man squad for the Oceania Cup, next week.
Jacky Marcus from the New Guinea Islands has been named in the backs, alongside Kautu brothers Jonah and Tisa, halves Nigel Genia and Liebert Suang and Richard Aitsi.
Sevens stars Wesley Vali and Butler Morris also make an appearance to the side, as well as Desmond Korpok, Sam Tam and Clifford Vali./
Breakdown in the forward pack will be crucial for the team’s performance, and heavy weights Wesley Thomas, Derek Paraka, Tui Fitiao and Rabbie Namaliu Jnr will be sure to assist in this regard.
Earlier in the week, Rabbie Namaliu said the team would need to work on their dynamics and structures, “It’s about getting used to the tempo of the game and different structures different teams play.”
The Pukpuks will take on Tahiti on Saturday 22nd August, and American Samoa in Game 2 on Wednesday the 26th of August, and Solomon Islands in their final game on Sunday 30th August.
Final Pukpuks 26man Oceania Squad:
Bradley Kelegai, Butler Morris, Clifford Vali, Desmond Korpock, Ezekiel Dauko, Derek Paraka, Lau Posu, Eli Pema Kini, Rabbie, Namaliu Jr, Richard Gebob, Sam Tam, Sarufa Kingsley, Tui Fitiao, Wesley Thomas, Zion Reto, Koroseta Vini
Jacky Marcus, Jacob Wodo, James Lumaris, Jonah Kautu, Liebert Suang, Nigel Genia, Paul Nelson, Richard Aitsi, Tisa Kautu, Wesley Vali.