14 Aug 2012

Auckland ITM Cup rugby squad named

3:42 pm on 14 August 2012

The Auckland coach Wayne Pivac has named his 26-man squad for the 2012 provincial rugby competition.

The squad features nine new caps named and 16 players with Super Rugby experience.

Daniel Braid, who's just eight caps shy of reaching 100 games for Auckland, will captain the side.

New Zealand Under-20 prop Ofa Tu'ungafasi has been named in the squad for the first time, alongside forwards Nathan Vella, Joe Tupe and Steve Fualau.

While Fualau is new to Auckland, he has 27 provincial caps for Canterbury and has also played for Manu Samoa.

Ben Lam and Albert Nikoro will make their provincial debuts, however both earned caps for the Blues earlier in the year.

Fellow backs Tony Fenner and Malakai Fekitoa are also in the squad for the first time.

The 19-year-old wing/fullback Lolagi Visinia is the youngest member of the team and was a member of the New Zealand Sevens team this year.