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Heartland squad named

Greytown midfielder Cyrus Baker, centre, will lead Wairarapa-Bush through their 2018 Heartland Championship campaign. PHOTO/FILE

RUGBY

JAKE BELESKI
[email protected]

Greytown midfielder Cyrus Baker will lead Wairarapa-Bush through their 2018 Heartland Championship campaign.

Baker was part of a 25-strong squad named on Thursday night by coach Joe Harwood and his selectors.

The squad is made up of 15 forwards and 10 backs, with two more players to be added in the coming days.

Kirk Tufuga has been selected as a player of origin, and will be vice-captain of the squad.

Greytown had the most players in the squad of any club, with seven.

There are four Marist players in the squad, and three from Gladstone, Martinborough and Eketahuna respectively.

Carterton have enjoyed an exceptional season and will contest today’s Tui Cup final against Gladstone, but have only contributed two players to the squad.

There are three players from outside the region who are either a player of origin or on loan.

Wairarapa-Bush will have their first hit-out against the New Zealand Army in a pre-season clash on August 7, and their first Heartland Championship match will be against Poverty Bay in Gisborne on August 25.

Wai-Bush squad

Forwards: Marcus Ale, Lance Buchanan, Nicholas Hohepa, Tavita Isaac [Greytown]; Sam Gammie, Sam Shaw [Eketahuna]; James Goodger, Jeremiah Mapusua [Marist]; Conan Gray, Lachlan McFadzean [Carterton]; James Pakoti [Martinborough]; Andrew Smith, Epeli Rayaqayaqa [Gladstone]; Kirk Tufuga [Varsity – player of origin]; Max Tufuga [Varsity – loan player].

Backs: Cyrus Baker, Matt Henderson, Nicholas Olson [Greytown]; Robbie Anderson [Eketahuna]; Paddy Gluck, Soli Malatai [Marist]; Tristan Flutey, Tipene Haira [Martinborough]; Inia Katia [Gladstone]; Michael Lealava’a [Wainuiomata – loan player].

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