Five players with substantial NRL experience headline the Lebanon side named for the Rugby League World Cup.
Topping the list is former Kangaroos and New South Wales hooker Robbie Farah who will captain the Cedars. He has made 271 NRL appearances for Wests Tigers (247) and South Sydney (24).
Named vice-captain is Mitchell Moses who boasts 83 games for Wests Tigers (67) and Parramatta (16).
Farah and Moses are joined by other seasoned current NRL players front rower Tim Mannah (205 games for Parramatta) and hooker Michael Lichaa who has played 80 games for Cronulla (15) and Canterbury-Bankstown (65).
Also selected is former Brisbane, Canberra and Parramatta fullback-wing Reece Robinson, who is making a return to rugby league after switching to rugby union in 2015. He scored 56 tries in 116 NRL games for Canberra and Parramatta.
Other players with limited NRL experience include Wests Tigers prop Alex Twal, Ray Moujalli and Travis Robinson while the remainder of the squad is made up of a host of young Lebanese players who will have the chance to showcase their skills on the world stage.
The Lebanese Rugby League competition will also be represented with Raymond Sabat from Lycans FC selected in the final squad, while four other players from that competition will travel with the team throughout the tournament with an aim to take their experiences back to Lebanon.
Fittler said he was pleased with how the squad has come together, with preparation well under way ahead of Lebanon’s first match of the tournament against France in Canberra on October 29.
“It was tough selecting a final squad for the Rugby League World Cup,” he said.
“I think one of the hardest but most gratifying things is watching how disappointed some players were for not making it.
“If the love of this game is any guide to how we will play, then we will be very competitive in this tournament.
"These players have a great passion for the game of rugby league and it’s a quality squad that we have assembled.”
The Cedars will come up against Australia, England and France in their pool matches in their first appearance at the Rugby League World Cup since 2000. At that tournament, Lebanon fell 0-64 to the Kiwis but lost narrowly 22-24 and drew 22-22 with the Cook Islands.
Lebanon will play Niue this Saturday (October 14) at Leichhardt Oval in a warm-up match for the RLWC.
The Cedars recognise the continued support of their corporate partners with Chalouhi the major sponsor of the Lebanese team for the RWLC 2017.
Other partners of the Cedars’ World Cup campaign include Holdmark, Dental on Evaline, Victor, Zahli, PTC, Jasara Constructions (Coach Sponsor), Trinity Constructions (Membership Sponsor) and Speedway Petroleum.
Lebanon Cedars Memberships, Team Gear and Jerseys are available to purchase now from the Official Website: http://lebanonrl.com/products/
LEBANON | THE CEDARS
Robbie Farah (South Sydney) captain
Mitchell Moses (Parramatta Eels) vice-captain
Danny Barakat (Wentworthville)
Jamie Clark (Auburn Warriors)
Adam Doueihi (South Sydney)
James Elias (West Newcastle)
Ahmad Ellaz (Auburn Warriors)
Nick Kassis (Blacktown Workers)
Andrew Kazzi (Wests Tigers)
Anthony Layoun (Parramatta Eels)
Michael Lichaa (Bulldogs)
Mitchell Mamary (Wentworthville)
Bilal Maarbani (Manly Sea Eagles)
Abbas Miski (North Sydney)
Tim Mannah (Parramatta Eels)
Ray Moujalli (Bulldogs)
Reece Robinson (unattached)
Travis Robinson (Newtown)
Chris Saab (Blacktown Workers)
Raymond Sabat (Lycans FC)
Jaleel Seve-Derbas (Wests Tigers)
Elias Sukkar (Wentworthville)
Alex Twal (Wests Tigers)
Jason Wehbe (unattached)
THE LEBANON CEDARS AT RLWC2017 | POOL GAMES
v France Chanticleers
4.00pm, Sunday, October 29
GIO Stadium, Canberra
v England Lions
8.00pm, Saturday, November 4
Allianz Stadium, Sydney
v Australia Kangaroos
8.00pm, Saturday, November 11
Allianz Stadium, Sydney