You have skipped the navigation, tab for page content

Junior Kangaroos players are hoping to play New Zealand in regular under 23s Test after a week in camp with the Kangaroos that left the young stars buzzing.

The team's new 'Australia A' concept was launched with a crushing 62-4 defeat of France at WIN Stadium on Friday night, but despite the nature of the win the players believe it has helped prepared them for higher honours with the Kangaroos.

Former Australian captains Darren Lockyer and Laurie Daley spoke to the players in camp, while they had a combined meeting with the Kangaroos and opposed training session in Kiama on Tuesday.

"We had an all-in session with the big boys and us boys earlier in the week, we talked about the rise and what we could bring to the table," Junior Kangaroos captain David Fifita said.

"There is a new crop coming through and we just talked about the changes we can make as a big group because from this team it is just a step up to the big boys."

Ponga sends Fifita over on the left

Australian coach Mal Meninga told the players that they were part of a wider squad who would be considered for next year's Kangaroos tour and the 2021 World Cup.

They were also told about the possibility of playing a New Zealand under 23s team.

"They are trying to do that and in the near future it would probably be a good idea to play Australia versus New Zealand under 23s before the big games like this," Fifita said.

Is it Corey Horsbra or Horsberg?

"I think it is a great concept to have the best under 23s talent in the game. There could have been more boys here due to injury. It is a good upbringing for the game and this is the next step for the big boys."

As part of the Australia A concept, each member of the team had the letter 'A' embroidered on their jersey with a number they were allocated.

Fifita was No.1 as the captain, with vice-captain Brodie Croft being given No.2 and the other players awarded numbers in alphabetical order. Sydney Roosters lock Victor Radley was No.13.

"It was pretty special to be in that first group of players to be involved in that Australia A system," Radley said.

"We trained with the first team on Tuesday and had a bit of a session with Mal about how passionate he is about international football and especially Australia.

"It would be awesome to be involved in a Kangaroo tour but what I took away from it the most was the history of the Australian jersey. It is a privilege to wear it. It is not our jersey that I wore today, it is my job to leave it in a better spot than I got it."

Radley barges over for his double

Each member of the team was given the task of researching the career of a former Kangaroos player and Radley chose former Roosters great Ian Schubert.

"He is at the Roosters now, he is doing a bit of work for the club and he actually had an accident not long ago so I thought I would learn a bit more about him," Radley said.

"He was a legend player, he was involved with the Invincibles side that went undefeated [on the 1982 Kangaroos tour]. I still see him around the club so it is good I know a bit more about it."

Acknowledgement of Country

National Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

Premier Partner

Media Partners

Major Partners

View All Partners