Young PNG squad for rookie coach Gene

New Papua New Guinea coach Stanley Gene has been given a relatively inexperienced squad for the Kumuls’ Four Nations debut against Australia later this month.

The Kumuls have named seven players yet to play international rugby league and four who made their debuts this year in their 30-man squad for the tournament starting on October 24 against Australia at Parramatta Stadium.

The longest-serving member of the squad is Tony Dai (Goroka Bintangor Lahanis), 29, who made his debit in 1998 and he has played eight Tests.

For Gene, it will be his first major tournament as coach, after his debut at the helm against the Australian Prime Minister’s XIII last month.

The “ageless" Papua New Guinea legend Stanley Gene retired from representative rugby league after the 2008 World Cup and 13 years in the national team.

The Kumuls 30-man train on squad is: Macali Aizue (Halifax RLFC); Francis Ray, Mark Mexico, Johnson Kuike, Nixon Kolo (Masta Mak Rangers); Paul Aiton (Cronulla Sharks); Rod Griffin (Northern Pride); Menzie Yere (Sheffield Eagles); Rodney Pora, Dion Aiye, George Moni, Sigfred Gande, Larsen Marabe, Pidi Tongap (Agmark Rabaul Gurias); Richard Kambo (Newtown Jets); Ryan Tongia (Gold Coast Titans); Michael Mark, Charlie Wabo (Hunslet Hawks); Jessie Joe Parker, Elizah Riyong (Port Moresby Vipers); Benjamin John (Parkes Spacemen); Glen Nami, Tony Dai, Thompson Teteh (Goroka Bintangor Lahanis); Joseph Pombo (Canterbury Bulls); Desmond Mok (Ipswich Jets); Andrew Sam (SBSL Mendi Muruks); David Loko (Mioks); Joe Bond (Norths Devils); Jack Cooper (North Queensland Cowboys NYC); Alex Haija (QRL).