Rebels add trio to Super squad - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Rebels add trio to Super squad

17/05/2010 04:00:57 PM Comments (0)

While they wait for the playing future of Israel Folau and Mark Gasnier to be decided, the Melbourne Rebels have added a further three names to their Super rugby squad.

Former representative second-rower Alister Campbell, former Force back James Hilgendorf and young Queensland prop Heath Tessman have signed on with the new franchise, which will join the expanded competition from next year.

Giant centre Folau is torn between remaining with the Brisbane Broncos, playing rugby with the Rebels or joining AFL expansion team Greater Western Sydney, and said he would make his decision this month with Rebels officials still hopeful.

They are also still waiting on a decision from Gasnier, who has been playing rugby in France, although he's reportedly set to return to the NRL.

Melbourne are also negotiating with former Australian league representative Luke Rooney, who has been playing for French club Toulon for the last two seasons.

Hilgendorf will return to Australia from playing in Japan with Kobe Steel and impressed Rebels assistant coach Damien Hill with his versatility and experience.

"Jimmy will be a huge asset to the Melbourne Rebels," Hill said.

"He has the ability to cover 10, 12 and 15, possesses a strong kicking and passing game and has the size and footwork to play at the line in attack."

Campbell, who played four Tests for the Wallabies in 2005, previously played for NSW and the Brumbies before moving to France with Montpellier.

Forwards coach Mark Bakewell rated highly the 30-year-old's leadership qualities.

"Another captain in the ranks, he's an incredibly positive and enthusiastic guy, a great leader and organiser around lineout," Bakewell said.

"He's going to be a great addition to the foundation group."

Tessman, currently with the Queensland Reds Academy squad, can play hooker and loose head.

The trio bring the squad size to 18.

Melbourne Rebels: Peter Betham, Adam Byrnes, Alister Campbell, Danny Cipriani, Sam Cordingley, Tim Davidson, Gareth Delve, Adam Freier, James Hilgendorf, Luke Jones, Richard Kingi, Hoani Macdonald, Lachlan Mitchell, Stirling Mortlock, Jarrod Saffy, Greg Somerville, Heath Tessman, Laurie Weeks.

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