Gagai and Mata'utia named All Stars
Newcastle Knights' Dane Gagai and Sione Mata'utia have been named to play in the NRL All Stars match, played at McDonald Jones Stadium on February 10, 2017.
Gagai will again represent the Indigenous All Stars, coached by Laurie Daley, while Sione Mata'utia has been named for Mal Meninga's World All Stars team for the very first time.
Meninga said he was excited by the opportunity to coach the World All Stars team, with many of the World All Stars players such as Mata'utia also new to the team and experience.
“The All Stars match is a fantastic way to kick off the rugby league season in Australia and I’m looking forward to the chance to be part of the build-up,” Meninga said.
Daley, who will coach his fourth consecutive Indigenous All Stars team, said he was pleased to see the game being shared with a new audience and fan-base outside of Queensland for the first time in the match’s history.
“The All Stars is a wonderful celebration for players and fans alike and I am sure that the people of Newcastle and further afield will get right behind the chance to see some of the best Indigenous and non-Indigenous players on-field,” Daley said.
Mata'utia and Gagai will play on home turf with the match played in Newcastle for the first time. Tickets are on sale at www.nrl.com/tickets.
World All Stars: Jarryd Hayne, David Mead, Joseph Leilua, Konrad Hurrell, Nene Macdonald, Mitchell Moses, Adam Reynolds, Nate Myles, Jake Friend, Jordan McLean, Gavin Cooper, Bryce Cartwright, Jake Trbojevic. Interchange: Reagan Campbell-Gillard, Sosaia Feki, Sione Mata'utia, Sam Lisone, Moses Mbye, Tepai Moeroa, Jordan Turner.
Indigenous All Stars: Jack Wighton, Blake Ferguson, Greg Inglis, Will Chambers, Dane Gagai, Johnathan Thurston, Ash Taylor, Ryan James, Nathan Peats, Andrew Fifita, Joel Thompson, Wade Graham, Sam Thaiday. Interchange: Tyrone Peachey, Jack Bird, Leilani Latu, Latrell Mitchell, Aidan Sezer, Kyle Turner, Adam Elliott.