Cleary appointed as PM’s XIII coach

Penrith coach Ivan Cleary has been appointed to take over from Laurie Daley as coach of the Prime Minister’s XIII for the annual clash with Papua New Guinea.

The ARL commission announced a 30-man train-on squad, made up of teams not involved in the NRL finals, on Tuesday for the match at Port Moresby on September 26.

State of Origin stars Dane Gagai, Aaron Woods, Josh Papalii, Will Hopoate and Daly Cherry-Evans headline the preliminary roster.

Canberra have six players on the list, including youngsters Jack Wighton and Shannon Boyd, the most of any club not involved in the finals.

PNG native James Segeyaro could also line-up against his country of birth.

More players will be added after week one of the finals, with a final line-up to be named on September 15.

Cleary said he was elated to get the chance to coach at a representative level and hinted that some selections would be a pre-cursor to the 2017 World Cup.

“I’m very grateful for the opportunity, and I’m particularly looking forward to working with some of the younger players who have bright futures,” he said.

“This will be an important match for the players who are ultimately selected. This may be a stepping stone for some ahead of the 2017 World Cup.”

The PM’s XIII, who are undefeated in the fixture since its inception in 2005, defeated the Kumuls 34-16 last year.

Train-on squad: Jake Mamo, Dane Gagai, Jack Stockwell (Newcastle); James Tedesco, David Nofoaluma, Mitchell Moses, Aaron Woods, Curtis Sironen (Wests Tigers); James Roberts, Kane Elgey, Kierran Moseley, Beau Falloon, Ryan James (Gold Coast); Josh Mansour, James Segeyaro, Reagan Campbell-Gillard, Tyrone Peachey (Penrith); Jack Wighton, Edrick Lee, Jarrod Croker, Shannon Boyd, Paul Vaughan, Josh Papalii (Canberra); Will Hopoate, Tepai Moeroa (Parramatta); Chad Townsend, Nathan Friend (Warriors); Tom Trbojevic, Daly Cherry-Evans, Jake Trbojevic (Manly).

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