Sandell joins junior Wallabies

Wed, 11 Jun 2014 14:14
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The Australian Under-20 selectors have called New South Wales junior and Sydney University representative Matt Sandell into the squad.

The Australian Under-20 selectors have called New South Wales junior and Sydney University representative Matt Sandell into the squad for their crucial last two games at the IRB Junior World Championship.

Australia narrowly missed out on making the semifinals of the tournament, currently being played in New Zealand, despite finishing fourth on equal points with the host nation.

Australia was relegated to the fifth place play-off due to an inferior points differential. Australia, France, Wales and Samoa will compete for fifth place.
Australia will play Samoa on Sunday, June 15.

Australian Under-20 coach Adrian Thompson said the team still has a lot to play for.

"Obviously we were disappointed that we didn't make the semifinals, especially since we proved we were good enough to be there with our final tournament points total," Thompson said.

"We will now turn our attention to our match against Samoa. A strong finish this year will assist the Under-20 team of 2015 with their seeding, helping position Australia to perform well at next year's tournament."

Matt Sandell is a former Australian Schoolboy representative and will still be available for selection for the Under-20 next year. He has been brought into the squad after an injury to Alifeleti Kaitu'u, who has returned to Australia for treatment.

"Matt offers a bit of cover for us as he can play any position in the front row and will be a valuable impact player," Thompson said.

"He made his first grade debut for Sydney University in the Shute Shield competition last week, so he is match fit and will transition into our squad with ease."

If the Under-20 are successful in their forthcoming match against Samoa, they will meet the winner of France and Wales.

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Pool A
Team P W D L Pts
Ireland U20 3 3 0 0 13
New Zealand U20 3 2 0 1 10
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Team P W D L Pts
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France U20 3 1 0 2 6
Japan U20 3 0 0 3 0