At least 12 players are set to make their first NRLW appearances for the Warriors when they open their 2020 season against defending premier Brisbane at GIO Stadium in Canberra on Saturday (3.00pm kick-off local time; 6.00pm NZT).
New coach Brad Donald’s starting line-up includes the only five players he is able to call on who have had previous NRLW experience for the club – captain Georgia Hale at loose forward, Hilda Peters on the right wing, Crystal Tamarua at prop, Kanyon Paul at hooker and Madison Bartlett in the second row.
The only other player who has worn the club’s colours is Tokoroa-born Shontelle Stowers, who represented the Warriors at this year’s NRL Nines in Perth.
Match: Broncos v Warriors
Round 1 -
Fullback for Broncos is number 1 Tamika UptonFullback for Warriors is number 1 Karina Brown
Winger for Broncos is number 2 Lauren BrownWinger for Warriors is number 2 Hilda Peters
Centre for Broncos is number 3 Julia RobinsonCentre for Warriors is number 3 Teaghan Hartigan
Centre for Broncos is number 4 Jayme FressardCentre for Warriors is number 4 Evania Pelite
Winger for Broncos is number 5 Meg WardWinger for Warriors is number 5 Ellia Green
Five-Eighth for Broncos is number 6 Raecene McGregorFive-Eighth for Warriors is number 6 Kirra Dibb
Halfback for Broncos is number 7 Ali BrigginshawHalfback for Warriors is number 7 Simone Smith
Prop for Broncos is number 8 Millie BoyleProp for Warriors is number 8 Crystal Tamarua
Hooker for Broncos is number 9 Lavinia GouldHooker for Warriors is number 9 Kanyon Paul
Prop for Broncos is number 10 Chelsea LenarduzziProp for Warriors is number 10 Kayla Sauvao
2nd Row for Broncos is number 11 Amber Hall2nd Row for Warriors is number 11 Madison Bartlett
2nd Row for Broncos is number 12 Jessika Elliston2nd Row for Warriors is number 12 Tazmin Gray
Lock for Broncos is number 13 Tarryn AikenLock for Warriors is number 13 Georgia Hale
Interchange for Broncos is number 14 Annette BranderInterchange for Warriors is number 14 Shaniah Power
Interchange for Broncos is number 15 Tallisha HardenInterchange for Warriors is number 15 Taimane Levu
Interchange for Broncos is number 16 Shannon MatoInterchange for Warriors is number 16 Samantha Economos
Interchange for Broncos is number 17 Tyler BirchInterchange for Warriors is number 17 Brianna Clark
- Referee: Henry Perenara
- Touch Judge: Jon Stone
- Touch Judge: Drew Oultram
- Senior Review Official: Steve Clark
Other selection features include Jillaroos and former Sydney Roosters players in the key spine roles at fullback (Karina Brown), standoff (Kirra Dibb) and halfback (Simone Smith).
And starting in the second row is Tazmin Gray – Kiwi Jordan Rapana’s sister – who was a premiership winner with the Broncos last year, played for the Roosters in 2018 and has represented both Australia and Queensland in the women’s State of Origin series.
Named on the left wing is Australian sevens rugby union star Ellia Green with teammate Evania Pelite named in the centres. They were both in Australia’s gold medal-winning team at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
Gray has the most NRLW experience in the squad, having in a total of eight matches – including both grand finals – in the competition’s first two seasons. Brown has appeared in each of the Roosters’ seven matches while Hale and Peters played in all of the Warriors’ six games in 2018 and 2019.