USA Names Colonial Cup Squad

From Brian Lowe, AMNRL media

The American National Rugby League has named an 18-man squad for the opening game of the Colonial Cup series against Canada.

The match is scheduled to be played this Saturday night at Lamport Stadium in Toronto.

The Tomahawks’ squad is dominated by the AMNRL’s Atlantic Conference’s Connecticut Wildcats who have eight players on the roster.  The reigning champion New York Knights have the next highest representation with four players on the squad, while the remainder comprise guys from the Atlantic and Pacific Conferences, as well as the Southampton Dragons in the UK.

Regular Tomahawks captain Apple Pope will miss the game because of a broken hand, an injury he picked up while playing for the AMNRL’s President’s XIII against Samoa last month.

The team’s head coach for this cross-border series is Marcus Vassilakopoulos, with Damian Flint named as Assistant Coach/Team Manager.

Coach Vassilakopoulos has already acknowledged the Wolverines are legit and that they have been getting better year by year since returning to international rugby league in 2010 following a ten year break.

“We’ll need to improve our ball control against Canada and have a better line speed and kicking game,” he said.

The USA holds an overall 13-2 record all-time against its northern neighbors and is 5-1 against the Wolverines since 2010, although never before have they faced a Canadian team as talented as the one they will square off against during this year’s Colonial Cup series.

North American bragging rights aside, the American coaching staff intend to use this series to make final assessments of domestic players staking claims for spots on the Tomahawks’ 24-man roster for RLWC2013.

The USA is ranked #12 on the RLIF World Rankings, while Canada checks in at #19 going into Saturday’s game.  RLIF World Rankings will be on the line in this series.

USA TOMAHAWKS SQUAD:

Mike Cartwright (New York Knights), Bryan Confer (Aston Bulls), Curtis Cunz (Connecticut Wildcats), Akarika Dawn (Jacksonville Axemen), Kristian Freed (Connecticut Wildcats), Pete Jordan (New York Knights), Andrew Kneisly (Aston Bulls), Vai Notoa (Hawaiian Chiefs), Mark Offerdahl (Connecticut Wildcats), Damien O’Malveney (Southampton Dragons), Craig Priestly (Southampton Dragons), Justin Ripley (New York Knights), Ben Sadgrove (New York Knights), Mike Schachter (Connecticut Wildcats),  Dennis Schmeiler (Connecticut Wildcats), Salesi Tongamoa (Connecticut Wildcats), Matt Walsh (Connecticut Wildcats), Taylor Welch (Connecticut Wildcats)

USA TOMAHAWKS 2013 Schedule:

USA v Canada (Colonial Cup, Toronto, July 6)

USA v Canada (Colonial Cup, Philadelphia, August 24)

USA v Canada (Colonial Cup, Toronto, September 21)

USA v France (Toulouse, October 18)

USA v Cook Islands (RLWC2013, Bristol, October 30)

USA v Wales (RLWC2013, Wrexham, November 3)

USA v Scotland (RLWC2013, Salford City, November 7)

 

Daniel Andruczyk’s email: daniel@RugbyLeagueinternationalscores.com
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10 Responses to “USA Names Colonial Cup Squad”

  1. Andrew Lane says:

    Southampton in the UK has a team but its the Spitfires. The Dragons apparently play out of Southampton, Long Island. (I’ll be honest I had to look them up too!)

  2. Interested Observer says:

    Spot on, that’s a big mistake in the article to make re dragons especially when it’s been written by the AMNRL’s media guy. You’d think he’d know what teams are actually in the AMNRL. So where are the Sharks players? Where are the other top USARL guys? How can they select Dawn who plays for Jax when they have said that USARL players are not eligible. Seems like the AMNRL want their cake and want to eat it too. It’s a joke to stick an inexperienced player from Hawaii in the team and overlook talented guys at the BC Sharks.

    • druzik says:

      I suspect the sharks players wont get a run because they chose to play the USARL 9s and not the AMNRL 7s tournament, they have close links to the USARL players still… they have been discriminated against for a couple years now.

      As for the USARL… well Vassy was at the Fight game when I saw them play the Axemen… I am assuming that Dawn was brought in because the AMNRL may be lacking ion that position and he may be the friendliest of the USARL for them? Maybe they are trying to coax him away? Who knows.

      One things for sure, Pope does not have a broken hand since has played in Axemen games, plenty of photos showing it.

    • RLIS says:

      I suspect the sharks players wont get a run because they chose to play the USARL 9s and not the AMNRL 7s tournament, they have close links to the USARL players still… they have been discriminated against for a couple years now.

      As for the USARL… well Vassy was at the Fight game when I saw them play the Axemen… I am assuming that Dawn was brought in because the AMNRL may be lacking ion that position and he may be the friendliest of the USARL for them? Maybe they are trying to coax him away? Who knows.

      One things for sure, Pope does not have a broken hand since has played in Axemen games, plenty of photos showing it.

  3. Interested Observer says:

    I can only see 2 comments (3 with this one) but it says there are more. Am I missing something?

  4. Interested Observer says:

    Re BC Sharks, they have not had a player on the National team for 4 or 5 yrs from memory so it’s not just the 9’s that has them offside. Clearly they don’t go drinking enough with the local selectors. Who by the way is picking the team for the RLWC?

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