(Main photo: Jordan Rapan. Credit: photosport.nz).
Canberra Raiders stars Jordan Rapana and Joseph Tapine have been added to the NZ Kiwis train-on squad to prepare for next month’s test against Australia and the subsequent Four Nations tournament in England.
The pair join North Queensland’s Dally M Medal winner Jason Taumalolo in the wider group, after their clubs were eliminated from the NRL playoffs in last weekend’s semi-finals.
Rapana has been one of the NRL’s form wings this season, scoring 23 tries and making 26 line-breaks, and leading the competition in both categories.
Tapine is a former Junior Kiwi, who transferred from Newcastle Knights to Canberra mid-season and immediately made an impact off the bench.
Taumalolo (Kiwi #786) debuted for the Kiwis during the 2014 Four Nations and last played for the national side against Australia in May.
Their inclusion brings the wider squad to 32, with the final touring group of 24 due to be named next week, after Sunday’s NRL Premiership final.
Meanwhile, Wests Tigers centre Tim Simona and Brisbane Broncos second row Alex Glenn have dropped out of contention through injury.
The current NZ Kiwis train-on squad is:
|Adam Blair||Brisbane Broncos|
|Lewis Brown||Manly Warringah Sea Eagles|
|Greg Eastwood||Canterbury Bankstown Bulldogs|
|James Fisher-Harris||Penrith Panthers|
|Addin Fonua-Blake||Manly Warringah Sea Eagles|
|David Fusitu’a||NZ Warriors|
|Shaun Johnson||NZ Warriors|
|Jordan Kahu||Brisbane Broncos|
|Solomone Kata||NZ Warriors|
|Shaun Kenny-Dowall||Sydney Roosters|
|Thomas Leuluai||NZ Warriors|
|Sam Lisone||NZ Warriors|
|Isaac Liu||Sydney Roosters|
|Tuimoala Lolohea||NZ Warriors|
|Issac Luke||NZ Warriors|
|Simon Mannering||NZ Warriors|
|Te Maire Martin||Penith Panthers|
|Suaia Matagi||Penrith Panthers|
|Manu Ma’u||Parramatta Eels|
|Sam Moa||Sydney Roosters|
|Jason Nightingale||St George Illawarra Dragons|
|Jordan Rapana||Canberra Raiders|
|Brad Takairangi||Parramatta Eels|
|Joseph Tapine||Canberra Raiders|
|Jason Taumalolo||North Queensland Cowboys|
|Martin Taupau||Manly Warringah Sea Eagles|
|Elijah Taylor||Wests Tigers|
|Jazz Tevaga||NZ Warriors|
|Bodene Thompson||NZ Warriors|
|Manu Vatuvei||NZ Warriors|
|Jared Waerea-Hargreaves||Sydney Roosters|
|Dallin Watene-Zelezniak||Penrith Panthers|