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Hunt among Dragons earning international call-ups

Dragons captain Ben Hunt has been named in the Kangaroos' 21-man squad for their upcoming Pacific Championships with centre Moses Suli and returning forward Hame Sele both listed for Tonga and Jack de Belin and Dan Russell joining the Kumuls squad.

NRLW standouts Raecene McGregor, Tyla Nathan-Wong, Angelina Teakaraanga-Katoa, Taylor-Adeline Mapusua and Margot Vella have also been named to represent their respective nations.

The 33-year-old will look to add to his dozen caps in the green and gold when their tournament kicks off with a World Cup Final rematch against Samoa at QLD Country Bank Stadium on Saturday, October 14th.

The Kangaroos will then enjoy a week off before facing the Kiwis at AAMI Park with a pair of wins propelling them to the Pacific Championships Final in Hamilton on Saturday, November 4th.

Hunt scored a try off the bench in his international debut in a winning effort against England in the 2014 Four Nations in Melbourne before earning his first taste of World Cup action in 2017.

He appeared in five of the Kangaroos' six clashes at the end of last year including their World Cup Final win at Old Trafford.

In 22 appearances for the Red V this season, he scored eight tries and assisted on 19.

Teagan Berry however was overlooked for the Jillaroos squad for their upcoming Tests despite a remarkable season that included a competition-high 11 tries and the RLPA Players' Champion award.

Suli again takes his place in the Tongan squad after playing a part in their World Cup campaign 12 months ago whilst Sele, who returns to Red V on a three-year deal for 2024, will be aiming to make his international debut after an impressive year with the Rabbitohs.

Tonga will jet off to the UK for a historic three-match tour commencing on Monday, October 23rd in St Helens before clashes in Huddersfield and Leeds.

A five-Test veteran, Suli made his first appearance in Tongan colours as a teenager back in 2017 scoring a try in the side's 26-24 win over Fiji in Campbelltown.

This year with the Red V, he appeared in 22 games averaging 131 run metres and breaking 76 total tackles.

De Belin, meanwhile, who qualifies for Papua New Guinea through his maternal grandmother, is set to make his international debut for the Kumuls whilst Russell earns another call-up after a successful World Cup campaign and rookie season at NRL level within the past 12 months.

Papua New Guinea’s Pacific Bowl campaign kicks off against Cook Islands Aitu in Port Moresby on Sunday, October 15th before facing Fiji Bati two weeks later at the same venue.

A pair of wins will see them advance through to the Pacific Bowl Final in Port Moresby on Sunday, November 5th.

De Belin has 205 NRL games and a trio of State of Origin caps under his belt but is yet to set foot on the international stage.

Russell, meanwhile, made his debut for the Kumuls back in 2019 before proving an integral member of their squad at last year's World Cup.

Dan Russell in Papua New Guinea colours in last year's midseason win over Fiji in Campbelltown.
Dan Russell in Papua New Guinea colours in last year's midseason win over Fiji in Campbelltown.

He has played seven total games for Papua New Guinea as a second rower, centre, and winger having scored two tries.

The 27-year-old made his NRL debut for the Dragons in Round 19 this season after toiling away in the lower grades for the best part of nine years and went on to appear in eight matches.

Winger Mikaele Ravalawa is primed to add to his two Fijian Test caps after earning a call-up for the Bati following his blockbusting 21 tries in 21 matches in the Red V this season.

McGregor, Nathan-Wong, and Teakaraanga-Katoa have all been named for the Kiwi Ferns who kick-off their Pacific Championships campaign against the Jillaroos in Townsville.

McGregor, who skippered the Dragons in 2023 and recently re-upped her deal with the club, was a part of the Kiwi Ferns side that lost to the Jillaroos in last year's World Cup Final and has been named to co-captain the side whilst dual-code star Nathan-Wong and workhorse middle Teakaraanga-Katoa will be eyeing debuts.

All three linked up with the Red V this season and enjoyed strong years with each of them appearing in every outing.

McGregor finished the year with seven try assists and 14 goals, Nathan-Wong managed three tries and assisted on five others, and Teakaraanga-Katoa averaged 123 run metres to go along with 196 total tackles at near 90 per cent efficiency.

A two-time winner of the New Zealand Sevens Player of the Year, Nathan-Wong is set to join an illustrious list of players to have tasted success in both rugby league and Sevens.

Tyla Nathan-Wong earns a Kiwi Ferns call-up after a standout rookie year with the Dragons.
Tyla Nathan-Wong earns a Kiwi Ferns call-up after a standout rookie year with the Dragons.

The 29-year-old made her Sevens debut as a teenager back in 2012 and went on to represent her country on 195 occasions including at the Olympics, Commonwealth Games, and Sevens Rugby World Cups.

She helped the Black Ferns Sevens take home gold at the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games before defending their crown at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

Mapusua, meanwhile, returns to the international stage for Fetu Samoa under newly named head coach Jamie Soward who handed the 25-year-old her Dragons debut back in Round 1.

The former Rooster earnt a recall in Round 7 scoring a double in the side's 48-16 win over the Cowboys.

Dragons Community staff member and Steelers player Ana Raduva is set to earn a Test debut after being called up for the Fiji Women's team, the Fiji Bulikula. 

Margot Vella added another Malta Dames cap under her belt on Saturday in the side's loss to Italy at Lidcombe Oval.

The 24-year-old made her NRLW debut with the Dragons this season and went on to score five tries from eight appearances.


  • Jack de Belin, Papua New Guinea
  • Ben Hunt, Australia
  • Taylor-Adeline Mapusua, Samoa
  • Raecene McGregor, New Zealand
  • Tyla Nathan-Wong, New Zealand
  • Ana Raduva, Fiji
  • Mikaele Ravalawa, Fiji
  • Dan Russell, Papua New Guinea
  • Hame Sele, Tonga
  • Moses Suli, Tonga
  • Angelina Teakaraanga-Katoa, New Zealand
  • Margot Vella, Malta
Acknowledgement of Country

St George Illawarra Dragons respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders peoples, where our games are played, our programs are conducted and in the communities we support.

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