Fans face the dual challenge of deciding which of their favourite players to select for NRL All Stars and Indigenous All Stars honours as the cut-throat final public stage of voting was launched today (Dec 10) for the 2013 Harvey Norman Rugby League All Stars.
Broncos stars Justin Hodges, Peter Wallace, Corey Parker and Jharal Yow Yeh were on hand in Brisbane’s Queen Street Mall today as online voting got underway at www.nrl.com/allstars for prized spots in the fourth annual All Stars match to be held at Brisbane’s Suncorp Stadium for the first time on February 9.
While fans have yet to have their say in the Indigenous All Stars team, more than 15,700 have had their say in Stage One of voting online for the NRL All Stars team to determine a 64-man ‘shortlist’ for the final stage of public voting.
Fans have until January 14 to cut that to16, with only one player from each club eligible for Wayne Bennett’s NRL All Stars; while fans can choose from Rugby League’s best Indigenous talent for Laurie Daley’s Indigenous All Stars.
Both coaches will be able to select additional bench players to complement the 16-man teams chosen by the public to make up a 20-man squad, with Bennett able to select two extras alongside automatic selections Benji Marshall (New Zealand captain) and Cameron Smith (Australian captain).
Daley will pick three extra players in addition to automatic selection and Indigenous All Stars captain Johnathan Thurston and the 16 public selections.
Storm superstar Billy Slater was one of the most popular players in Stage One voting which closed two weeks ago, but he faces his toughest challenge from team-mate Cooper Cronk to secure the one Melbourne spot in the NRL All Stars line-up.
Fans will also have to choose between the likes of Paul Gallen, Beau Ryan and Luke Lewis from the Sharks, the Raiders’ Josh Dugan and David Shillington, Eels Jarryd Hayne and Fuifui Moimoi, and the Dragons’ Ben Creagh and Brett Morris, who all made the ‘shortlist’ of 64 players, which comprises two forwards and two backs from each NRL Club.
NRL All Stars coach Wayne Bennett said: “It’s important we have the best players in the game in the team.
“My tip for the public selectors, who have always delivered an excellent team for me to work with, is to think about the key positions first – halfback, five-eighth, hooker and fullback.
“Given two of those spots are already covered with Benji Marshall (five-eighth) and Cameron Smith (hooker) as automatic selections, I would look at filling the halfback spot first, then fullback because there are so many quality options to choose from.
“You have the likes of Josh Dugan, who has done a good job the past two years; Jarryd Hayne, who is more than up to it at fullback after missing out with injury in previous years; and the talented Billy Slater, but he will no doubt be locked in a battle with Cooper Cronk for the one Storm spot.”
Bennett has now assigned the following positions to the 64 shortlisted players and has asked fans to consider his guide below when choosing their NRL All Stars team.
Backs have been divided into three separate groups:
- Fullback – Specialist role
- Outside Back – Includes centres and wings
- Inside Back – A player who can play five-eighth or halfback
Forwards have also been divided into three categories:
- Tight Forwards – A player who plays front-row and also second-row
- Edge Forwards – A second-rower or lock that can play on both the right and left side edge of a team’s attack and defence
- Hooker – Specialist role
Bennett is also asking the fans to consider:
- Players marked as utility players have been designated on the basis of their ability to cover multiple positions
- The seven-man bench will require:
- two Tight Forwards
- one Edge Forward
- one Inside Back
- one Outside Back
- two Utilities.
|Club||Backs/ Forwards||Bennett’s Positional Guide|
|Broncos||Peter Wallace||Inside back|
|Ben Hannant||Tight forward|
|Corey Parker||Tight forward|
|Bulldogs||Josh Morris||Outside back|
|Krisnan Inu||Outside back|
|Sam Kasiano||Tight forward|
|Tony Williams||Edge forward|
|Cowboys||Ashley Graham||Outside back|
|Kane Linnett||Outside back|
|James Tamou||Tight forward|
|Matthew Scott||Tight forward|
|Dragons||Brett Morris||Outside back|
|Jason Nightingale||Outside back|
|Ben Creagh||Edge forward|
|Trent Merrin||Tight forward|
|Eels||Jarryd Hayne||Fullback/ Outside back|
|Ken Sio||Fullback/ Outside back|
|Fuifui Moimoi||Tight forward|
|Tim Mannah||Tight forward|
|Knights||Akuila Uate||Outside back|
|Kade Snowden||Tight forward|
|Panthers||Michael Jennings||Outside back|
|Tim Grant||Tight forward|
|Sika Manu||Edge forward|
|Rabbitohs||Adam Reynolds||Inside back|
|Andrew Everingham||Outside back|
|Ben Te’o||Edge forward|
|Jarrod Croker||Outside back|
|David Shillington||Tight forward|
|Josh Papalii||Edge forward|
|Roosters||James Maloney||Inside back|
|Shaun Kenny-Dowall||Outside back|
|Jared Waerea-Hargreaves||Tight forward|
|Frank-Paul Nuuausala||Tight forward|
|Sea Eagles||Brett Stewart||Fullback|
|Jamie Lyon||Outside back|
|Glenn Stewart||Edge forward|
|Anthony Watmough||Edge forward/ Tight forward|
|Sharks||Beau Ryan||Fullback/ Outside back|
|Michael Gordon||Fullback/ Outside back|
|Paul Gallen||Tight forward|
|Luke Lewis||Edge forward|
|Cooper Cronk||Inside back|
|Ryan Hoffman||Edge forward|
|Kevin Proctor||Edge forward|
|Kevin Gordon||Outside back|
|David Taylor||Edge forward|
|Nate Myles||Tight forward|
|Warriors||Shaun Johnson||Inside back|
|Konrad Hurrell||Outside back|
|Feleti Mateo||Edge forward|
|Ben Matulino||Tight forward/ Edge forward|
|Wests Tigers||Chris Lawrence||Outside back|
|Tim Moltzen||Fullback/ Inside back/ Utility|
|Aaron Woods||Tight forward|
2013 Harvey Norman Rugby League All Stars Ticket Categories and Prices
Tickets for the 2013 Harvey Norman All Stars match are available through Ticketek outlets, on 132 849 or www.ticketek.com.au. New Zealand customers can call 0800 842 538 or +61 132 849.
The Harvey Norman Rugby League All Stars is supported by Events Queensland as part of a growing calendar of sporting, cultural, regional and business events across Queensland.
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