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TOPIC: 2014 lineup

2014 lineup 4 years 2 months ago #19386

  • shazza
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If there's 1 thing our Holden Cup squad has lacked in recent years it's been genuine size in the forwards. Campbell-Gillard and Ross both had plenty of meat (and muscle) on the bone but I think it's pretty well accepted that our Holden Cup forwards are generally required to punch well above their weight when they come up against the heavyweights (no pun intended) in the competition.
The signing of Kumuls' World Cup giant Wellington Albert should go a long way to addressing this recent shortcoming..
Phil Gould's statement that he's "the biggest PNG boy I have ever seen" says it all and although PNG isn't the most skillful Rugby League competition in the world, it's certainly one of the toughest. Any 19 year-old kid who can cut it in the front-row in that ferocious environment should be a great addition to our burgeoning war-chest of junior talent. He's not only big, Gould said in the SMH this morning that "He's very fast and quite powerful. He gallops like a gazelle and is a beautiful mover." He (Wellington) says he feels equally at home on the wing or at prop but according to the GM, the front row is where he'll be expected to make a name for himself. He doesn't need to make a name for himself in PNG, in this Rugby League mad nation, his signing has made headlines in every newspapers in the country.
Just think of it, a 6ft 4" 105kgs James Segeyaro. Who wouldn't like to see that?

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2014 lineup 4 years 2 months ago #19389

  • Panther1967
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Penrith sign giant PNG youngster with size 15 feet

Michael Chammas
Published: February 3, 2014 - 3:00AM

First it was a panther, now there are reports of a bigfoot sighting at the foot of the mountains.

The 194-centimetre, 104-kilogram monster from Papua New Guinea, who goes by the name of Wellington Albert, was first seen meeting with Penrith Panthers general manager Phil Gould in December.

He was last spotted at Sportingbet Stadium on Thursday carrying a personally delivered package into the club's change rooms. The contents of the package were rare size 15 (33cm) football boots assumed to be used to trample over opposition defenders.

It is the first sighting of its kind, with Albert the first Papua New Guinean native to receive a NRL contract directly from his home country. The 19-year-old boarded a plane in PNG last Tuesday as a national hero, but touched down in Sydney as just another teenager with an NRL dream.

He will challenge Jamal Idris as the club's biggest player but he has them all covered in the shoe department. ''We had to get him specially made boots from Asics to fit him,'' Gould said.

In Papua New Guinea, they don't cater for the athlete with size 15 shoes. It wasn't until a schoolboys' trip to Brisbane that Albert finally found a pair of boots that fit him properly - so he bought two. Albert, the second youngest of a family of six children, was part of the Kumuls' World Cup campaign last year, impressing in his stints off the bench against Scotland and New Zealand.

He attracted interest from South Sydney and Wests Tigers, but it was Gould - who likened him to a young Petero Civoniceva - who struck the unique deal.

''He's very tall, he's got size 15 boots, hands as big as dinner plates and is the biggest PNG boy I have ever seen,'' Gould said. ''He's very fast, quite powerful. He gallops like a gazelle and is a beautiful mover. He's very well mannered and well spoken. He said he plays front row or wing. Wing because he is fast and front row because he is big. It's safe to say we'll be using him as a forward.

''He's just all raw ability at the moment. He's never been part of a football program, he's never lifted a weight, but he's a big, strong lad. It's quite exciting to get a raw talent like this just to see how far he will go.''

Since signing with the Panthers and joining fellow Papua New Guinean James Segeyaro at the club, the news has hardly made a noise in rugby league circles in Australia. But back home in PNG, the softly spoken Albert has become a household name.

''It was big news,'' Albert said. ''Every day I would be in the newspaper or on TV. All of the fans in PNG who watch NRL have favourite teams like Broncos, Roosters. But when they heard I was coming to Penrith, all of them say they go for Panthers. I'm a bit famous now.''

Albert's manager, Steve Deacon, believes the signing will have a huge impact in Papua New Guinea, where rugby league is already the No.1 sport. ''He'll be a national treasure,'' Deacon said. ''Kids will be running around wanting to be Wellington Albert. That will snowball once he gets his crack at NRL.''

Albert, who will start the season playing under coach Trent Barrett in the Panthers' under-20s team, is living with a New Zealand family and teammates in Cranebrook.

He comes from a well-educated family in Mendi, the capital of the Southern Highlands province. One of his brothers is a doctor, another is a civil engineer. His sister is studying accounting while another brother is studying economics.

While Albert believes he won't be homesick, he is hellbent on keeping a promise he made to his family before embarking on the new chapter of his career.

''They said, 'Go and do not do any bad things that will affect your character','' Albert said. ''They said, 'Go, train hard and continue to make us proud.' They were so happy. I want to do this for them.''

Albert, a Roosters and Broncos supporter, idolises Sonny Bill Williams. He played against Williams at the World Cup and collected a memento. ''After the game we swapped jerseys,'' Albert said. ''It's at home. I just framed it and put it in my house.''

Albert finished high school last year and will be enrolled in an economics degree at the University of Western Sydney. He speaks broken English but it isn't his ability to hold a conversation that concerns his new teammates.

''The boys were all a bit in awe of him when he walked through the car park for the first time,'' Barrett said. ''They were all asking what position he played. I said anywhere from wing to the front row so they were all a bit worried. You don't get much of a tougher breed than the Papua New Guineans. He ticks a lot of boxes.''

This story was found at:

And I thought we had finished with the signings.

He certainly looks the goods as a footballer.

Can't wait to see him in a months time in the under 20's.

Gus sure knows how to keep his cards close to his chest...and keeping the Sharks at bay. ;)

A clip from the 2013 R.L. World Cup:

And a PNG TV clip of him leaving for Oz at the airport:

Last Edit: 4 years 2 months ago by Panther1967.
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2014 lineup 4 years 2 months ago #19390

Anyone game to have a shot at a predicted line up?
Last Edit: 4 years 2 months ago by karnivayneeffect.
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2014 lineup 4 years 2 months ago #19391

  • Panther1967
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karnivayneeffect wrote:
Anyone game to have a shot at a predicted line up?

I haven't seen the squad for this season.

I know a player has gone to the beach (Manly) and one has gone down the road (Parra0.

So its a bit hard to even guess a run-on team.
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