Freddy names teen giant, next halves in Emerging Blues
RUGBY LEAGUE: Brad Fittler has named 38 NSW players of the future in an exciting Emerging Blues side, with a Broncos teen giant, star Roosters recruit and two gun halves headlining the squad.
Broncos 18-year-old Payne Haas has been one of the stories of the pre-season, scaring the life out of his more senior teammates with his size and power and when he's ready for the step up to origin level he'll be doing it in sky blue.
Haas is one of several players to have been named in Fittler's Emerging squad before making his NRL debut and he'll share the training track with some established first graders who could push for Origin honours as early as next year.
Parramatta halfback Mitchell Moses had an outstanding World Cup campaign for Lebanon and he looks set to battle it out with Nathan Cleary to be the next half called into NSW's senior side after both were named in the Emerging Blues.
Just a day after sealing a big money move to the Roosters for 2019, Rabbitohs rising star Angus Crichton was named in the squad alongside club teammate Cameron Murray, with Raiders outside backs Jarrod Croker and Nick Cotric also getting a chance to push their case.
The squad will assemble at ANZ Stadium on Saturday, January 13 for a session with NSW Origin legends ahead of the 2018 season.
Andrew Johns, Craig Fitzgibbon, Matt King, Mark O'Meley and Anthony Minichiello will join Fittler and NSW assistant coach Danny Buderus at the camp in specialist positional coaching roles.
In addition to undertaking skills work, Emerging Blues will attend presentations preparing the young stars for league's toughest arena.
"I've brought these players in because they're players I really respect and I believe they can learn a lot from the camp, both on and off the field," Fittler said.
"The majority of these players are young stars already playing first grade, or on their way to the top grade. These players will be the backbone of the NSW Origin team going forward. They all have a big future.
"We're hoping they get a lot from the Emerging Blues camp, about expectations, and learning from some of NSW Origin's best former players, who I have played with and really respect."
The 2018 Emerging Blues squad (in club and alphabetical order) is:
Payne Haas (Brisbane Broncos)
Tevita Pengai Jr. (Brisbane Broncos)
Michael Lichaa (Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs)
Nick Cotric (Canberra Raiders)
Jayden Brailey (Cronulla Sharks)
Kyle Flanagan (Cronulla Sharks)
Jessie Ramien (Cronulla Sharks)
Lachlan Croker (Manly Warringah Sea Eagles)
Jack Gosiewski (Manly Warringah Sea Eagles)
Brian Kelly (Manly Warringah Sea Eagles)
Luke Metcalf (Manly Warringah Sea Eagles)
Curtis Scott (Melbourne Storm)
Brock Lamb (Newcastle Knights)
Daniel Saifiti (Newcastle Knights)
Connor Watson (Newcastle Knights)
Nathan Cleary (Penrith Panthers)
Dylan Edwards (Penrith Panthers)
Moses Leota (Penrith Panthers)
Bevan French (Parramatta Eels)
Tepai Moeroa (Parramatta Eels)
Mitchell Moses (Parramatta Eels)
Kyle Schneider (Parramatta Eels)
Jake Hazard (Sydney Roosters)
Latrell Mitchell (Sydney Roosters)
Victor Radley (Sydney Roosters)
Angus Crichton (South Sydney Rabbitohs)
Tyrell Fuimaono (South Sydney Rabbitohs)
Campbell Graham (South Sydney Rabbitohs)
Cameron Murray (South Sydney Rabbitohs)
Matt Dufty (St George Illawarra Dragons)
Jai Field (St George Illawarra Dragons)
Zac Lomax (St George Illawarra Dragons)
Reece Robson (St George Illawarra Dragons)
Hame Sele (St George Illawarra Dragons)
Jacob Liddle (Wests Tigers)
Bayley Sironen (Wests Tigers)
Moses Suli (Wests Tigers)
Alex Twal (Wests Tigers)