Future Force players leading the pack at the Oceania U20s Championships

· Oceanic U20s Championship
by Rugby WA Media
WA boys Carlo Tizzano and Michael McDonald have secured a spot in the Australian U20s starting lineup for the upcoming match against Fiji in the Oceania tournament.


Furthermore to the WA presence within the team, McDonald will captain the side running out this afternoon his appointment is a clear reflection of the work he’s put in back home emerging as a leader in the WA Senior Academy program.

The RugbyWA Senior Academy program has been putting a major focus on player leadership enabling players to excel when they transition to their new teams.

After both players came off the bench in the tournaments first match against Japan the pair have been given the opportunity to step up and show their talent from the starting kick-off.

Both Tizzano and McDonald have made strides this year on the professional rugby scene debuting for the Western Force earlier this month when they faced the Asia Pacific Dragons in the Global Rapid Rugby competition.

Junior Wallabies head coach Jason Gilmore is looking forward to a tough challenge against Fiji prepping his team for the pivotal match against New Zealand later in the tournament.

"We’re looking forward to taking on the challenge of a strong Fijian side who we know will play that expansive style of game," he said. "They played a strong match against New Zealand and we’re expecting nothing less from them come Tuesday."

There have been some changes in the squad following our match against Japan, so we’re excited to see how these new boys go tomorrow night."

Fiji lost 53-7 to New Zealand in the opening round but played almost the entire second half a man down after having a player sent off for a high tackle.

"I think you need to pay more attention to that first 40 minutes against New Zealand," Gilmore said of a match that was poised at 8-7 late in the opening half before New Zealand pushed out to 15-7 at the break.

"We know they'll come out hard, particularly after the second half against New Zealand."

"We wanted to give as many players as possible time in the first two games and then we'll have a look at it again," Gilmore said of the final match against New Zealand on Saturday night will likely be the championship decider.

McDonald was ecstatic in the lead up to the upcoming match honoured to be given the opportunity to captain his country.

"I was told on Sunday morning by Jason (Gilmore), it's a bit overwhelming really knowing the fact that you get an opportunity to captain your country it's something I'm really excited about."

"All the boys prep for this match has been really good, there is a really good vibe around the squad at the moment we've had a really good couple of days leading into this match putting in some really productive sessions on the field."

"Being together for two weeks now has really helped our combinations are starting to come together and it's look really positive."

"The team atmosphere has been great this group is a really good bunch of lads and its been really easy to lead, we've stuck to the idea that we play our best footy when it's with our best mates and that philosophy has driven the team." 

"Obviously being in the Future Force program has helped me immensely leading into this tournament, coming into a squad with players you don'r really know has been made a lot easier with the leadership focussed programs that we've been through in the Future Force program." 

The match kicks off at 3pm AWST and will be broadcast LIVE on RUGBY.com.au as well as Oceania Rugby’s Facebook page.

Junior Wallabies to take on Fiji U20s

1. Egan Siggs, University of Queensland
2. Joe Cotton, Wests
3. Darcy Breen, Sydney University
4. Max Douglas, Manly Marlins
5. Michael Wood, Brothers
6. Tom Kibble, GPS
7. Carlo Tizzano, University of Western Australia
8. Pat Tafa, Northern Suburbs
9. Michael McDonald ©, Palmyra
10. Ben Donaldson, Randwick
11. Byron Ralston, Brothers
12. Kye Oates, University of Queensland
13. Semisi Tupou, Box Hill
14. Sione Tui, Melbourne Unicorns
15. Isaac Lucas, Sunnybank

16. Bo Abra, Eastern Suburbs
17. Lachlan Lonergan, Tuggeranong Vikings
18. Oliver Barden, Randwick
19. Trevor Hosea, Harlequins Rugby Club
20. Fraser McReight, Sunnybank
21. Henry Robertson, Sydney University,
22. Will Harrison, Randwick
23. Triston Reilly, Randwick
24. Josh Nasser, University of Queensland
25. Harry Wilson, Brothers
26. Nathan Lawson, Southern Districts
27. Noah Lolesio, Tuggeranong Vikings
28. Mark Nawaqanitawase, Eastwood

Oceania U20s Championship – Bond University, Gold Coast

Round 1 – Friday 26th
New Zealand U20s 53 defeated Fiji U20s 7
Junior Wallabies 64 defeated Junior Japan 14

Round 2 – Tuesday, April 30

New Zealand U20s v Junior Japan, 3.00pm
Junior Wallabies v Fiji U20s, 5.00pm

Round 3 – Saturday, May 4

Junior Japan v Fiji U20s, 5.00pm
Junior Wallabies v New Zealand U20s, 7.00pm