Reds keep hold of Shipperley - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Reds keep hold of Shipperley

Jim Morton 25/05/2011 04:29:17 PM Comments (0)

The Queensland Reds are breathing easier after striking a compromise with Australian Under-20s coach David Nucifora, enabling them to keep rising winger Dom Shipperley for their Super Rugby finals push.

Nucifora and the Australian Rugby Union have noted the importance of Shipperley to the Reds, allowing him to drop out of the squad for next month's Under-20 World Championships in Italy.

The decision is a major relief for Reds' coach Ewen McKenzie, who had been facing a wing crisis with Rod Davies and Peter Hynes both on the long-term injured list following knee surgery.

With fullback Ben Lucas (shoulder) in serious doubt to play the Crusaders on Sunday, the robust Shipperley is the next cab off the rank to start at Suncorp Stadium, with in-form flyer Luke Morahan set to move to No.15.

Nucifora's final 26-man national squad will be formally announced on Thursday, but Shipperley is the only original selection to be left at home.

The 20-year-old had been a fixture of the Reds' match-day 22 for the past month, starting once against the Hurricanes, but he didn't meet the threshold of four starts (or eight squad appearances) required before this month to be off-limits for U20s selection.

McKenzie had previously feared the table-topping Reds campaign could "die in a ditch" if they lost Shipperley, fellow contracted winger Kimami Sitauti and rising back-rowers Liam Gill and Ed Quirk to Australia's campaign.

He had started moves to contract a foreign-based winger short-term, before discussions between Nucifora and QRU chief executive Jim Carmichael produced a resolution.

"That's a fair middle-ground. Everyone has their needs and the compromise is a good one," McKenzie told AAP.

"Our depth is very thin in the outside backs and (Shipperley) is very important."

In contrast to Shipperley, Brumbies flankers Colby Faingaa and Michael Hooper will both tour with Nucifora's squad despite meeting the four-start quota.

Well out of finals calculations, the struggling Brumbies have allowed the pair to play in the interests of their own careers.

Faingaa looms as the squad's likely captain, following in the footsteps of older brother Saia, who led the Australian U19s to the 2006 junior world championship title in Dubai, with twin Anthony the vice-captain.

The fifth-placed NSW Waratahs will be forced to give up young winger Tom Kingston, who scored his first Super Rugby try in last weekend's 29-12 win over the Lions.

Brought to you by AAP AAP © 2022 AAP

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