The Reds have confirmed a 38-man senior squad for the 2016 Super Rugby season, with eight fresh faces in total joining the ranks at Ballymore Stadium.
In addition to the high-profile signings of Kane Douglas, Ayumu Goromaru, Cadeyrn Neville and NRL winger Eto Nabuli – the Reds also spent the off-season promoting from within the ranks of Queensland Rugby’s pathways with fly-half Sam Greene and outside backs Junior Laloifi and Izaia Perese earning contracts following their performances in Queensland Premier Rugby and the National Rugby Championship (NRC). They are joined by Australian U20s lock Lukhan Tui, who grew up in Sydney.
In all, 20 players were retained from the 2015 Super Rugby squad, 11 of which were off contract and re-signed with the Reds, including Liam Gill, Greg Holmes, James Slipper and Rob Simmons.
In addition to that, the Reds have further progressed the careers of eight members of its Elite Development Squad, promoting them to the Reds Senior Squad for the 2016 season.
Many of those promoted claimed back-to-back titles in the NRC with McInnes Wilson Lawyers Brisbane City, including props Sef Fa’agase, Pettowa Paraka and Sam Talakai, flanker Adam Korczyk and flyhalf Jake McIntyre.
All five made their Super Rugby debuts for the Reds in 2015 and were crucial to Brisbane City’s success of the last two seasons.
Former Australian Schoolboys and NRL player Lagi Setu will also join the Reds for pre-season, after being offered a training contract with the squad.
Setu played 76 games over a nine-year career in the NRL, most recently with the Roosters. After returning home to Ipswich earlier this year, he joined Bond University Queensland Country for the NRC and was offered a training contract off the back of his performances.
The Reds began pre-season training this week in preparation for the 2016 Super Rugby season, which kicks off Saturday 27 February against the Waratahs in Sydney. The Reds’ first home game is Saturday 5 March against the Western Force. Reds Memberships are available now at www.redsrugby.com.au.
2016 Reds Senior Squad:
Forwards: Ben Daley, Sef Fa’agase, Saia Fainga’a, Greg Holmes, Pettowa Paraka, Andrew Ready, James Slipper, Sam Talakai, Taniela Tupou, Kane Douglas, Cadeyrn Neville, Rob Simmons, Lukhan Tui, Curtis Browning, Lolo Fakaosilea, Liam Gill, Michael Gunn, Adam Korczyk, Jake Schatz, Hendrik Tui.
Backs: Nick Frisby, Scott Gale, Sam Greene, Jake McIntyre, James Tuttle, Anthony Fainga’a, Karmichael Hunt, Samu Kerevi, Duncan Paia’aua, Lagi Setu, Chris Feauai-Sautia, Ayumu Goromaru, Chris Kuridrani, Junior Laloifi, Campbell Magnay, Eto Nabuli, Izaia Perese, Jamie-Jerry Taulagi.