The South Sydney Rabbitohs and St George Illawarra Dragons clash in the annual Charity Shield match on Saturday, February 7 at ANZ Stadium, with both teams naming strong line-ups.
Fresh off their Dick Smith Auckland Nines triumph, the Rabbitohs have named the likes of Isaac Luke, George Burgess, Dylan Walker and Adam Reynolds, although Greg Inglis and John Sutton are both absent. New recruits Glenn Stewart and Tim Grant have both been included in the 24-man squad.
The Dragons have named skipper Ben Creagh and second rower Jack De Belin for their first games of 2015 while Eto Nabuli, a star at the Nines tournament, has been named in the squad, although not in the starting thirteen. Josh Dugan has returned to fullback, his place in the centres taken by 19-year old Euan Aitken.
“The Charity Shield is a special pre-season trial that all the players are always excited to be a part of if given the opportunity due to its history and tradition,” Creagh told dragons.com.
“I have been lucky to have played my fair share and it is always a game played with high intensity which is what you need as a player leading into the new season.
“The Rabbitohs are the bench mark team and will be a great challenge and test for us.
“This will be my first game of the pre-season and am looking forward to running out onto the field in front of all the Red V Members and supporters who will be cheering us on from the stands.”
The match raises money for various charities and in 2015 money will go to the St George and Wollongong hospitals as well as the St George Foundation.Charity Shield matches between the two clubs have been taking place since 1982, with the Rabbitohs taking out the 2014 fixture 38-20 at WIN Stadium in Wollongong.
South Sydney Rabbitohs Charity Shield Squad
1 Alex Johnston, 2 Daryl Millard, 3 Dylan Walker, 4 Bryson Goodwin, 5 Joel Reddy, 6 Luke Keary, 7 Adam Reynolds, 8 George Burgess, 9 Issac Luke (c), 10 Dave Tyrrell, 11 Kyle Turner, 12 Chris McQueen, 13 Jason Clark Interchange: 14 Cameron McInnes, 15 Chris Grevsmuhl, 16 Glenn Stewart, 17 Tim Grant, 18 Ben Lowe, 19 Scott Sorensen, 20 Brock Gray, 21 Angus Crichton, 22 Sam Manuleleau, 23 Setefano Taukafa, 24 Tom Hughes.
St George Illawarra Dragons Charity Shield Squad
1 Josh Dugan, 2 Dylan Farrell, 3 Euan Aitken, 4 Dane Nielsen, 5 Jason Nightingale, 6 Gareth Widdop, 7 Benji Marshall, 8 Mike Cooper, 9 Mitch Rein, 10 Leeson Ah Mau, 11 Tyson Frizell, 12 Joel Thompson, 13 Ben Creagh (c), 14 Peter Mata’utia, 15 Will Matthews, 16 Heath L’Estrange, 17 Rory O’Brien, 18 Jack de Belin, 19 Dan Hunt, 20 George Rose, 21 Charly Runciman, 22 Shannon Crook, 23 Drew Hutchison, 24 Eto Nabuli, 25 Jake Marketo, 26 Yaw Kiti Glymin.