You have skipped the navigation, tab for page content
Kangaroos form team: DCE, Trbojevic among five new faces in experts' squad

Five fresh faces have cracked the third Kangaroos form team picked on form by's expert panel of Jamie Soward, Brett Kimmorley and Steve Renouf.

Every month this season, for a series presented by Gallagher, the experts will each select a 17-man Kangaroos squad with a composite team then assembled based on their most popular picks.

Incumbency and career achievements weren't part of the selection criteria, so the trio's teams aren't necessarily a reflection of who they believe should make Australia's next official side.

Among the new additions is Sea Eagles captain Daly Cherry-Evans, who was voted in the halves alongside Nathan Cleary with incumbent Cameron Munster's foot injury restricting him to one match in May.

Cherry-Evans produced five try involvements and scored once to help Manly to three wins from five games throughout the voting period.

His teammate Jake Trbojevic - who played 80 minutes in all but one match in May and averaged 38 tackles per game - won the lock position, bumping Penrith's Isaah Yeo to the interchange.

Storm star Felise Kaufusi was chosen to partner David Fifita in the second-row over Newcastle's Tyson Frizell, whose team endured a tough month before he suffered an ankle injury.

The other newbies on the bench were Penrith's Kurt Capewell and Raiders pivot Jack Wighton, who was given the nod for the utility role in place of injured Melbourne livewire Ryan Papenhuyzen.

While Canberra have struggled, Wighton averaged just under 100 metres in his past three games and was selected for NSW.

The nucleus of the composite team has remained intact with James Tedesco, Josh Addo-Carr, Latrell Mitchell, Cleary, Junior Paulo, Damien Cook, Fifita and Christian Welch yet to be displaced.

Here's who the experts individually picked:

Jamie Soward

The former Blues playmaker "tossed up" between Brian To'o and Xavier Coates on the wing but settled on the Panther.

"If you're playing a game right now, the way the game's being played you need those metre-eaters, and Brian To'o's selection for NSW tells me that he's ready to be in an Australian jersey," he said.

Meanwhile, Knights prop Daniel Saifiti's strong finish to the month was enough for Soward to include him in his squad.

"Saifiti's form's been a little bit quiet recently, but [on Sunday] against Marty Taupau, Taniela Paseka, he was able to stand up and be counted and he's been rewarded with NSW selection," he said.

"I think he's back a little bit."

The premiership-winning Dragons five-eighth believes Isaah Yeo's selection at lock would complement his Penrith co-captain Nathan Cleary and said more Panthers combinations would help the Kangaroos "win a game against New Zealand or England".

And he explained he "went with Cherry-Evans because he's played off the bench for Australia before.

"You don't want to just carry a specialist hooker; you can reshuffle things if need be ... I decided to reward Cherry-Evans for his last month where he's been able to help Manly get inside the top eight."

Brett Kimmorley

"I think back-rowers are interesting at the moment because a lot of them are currently injured or suspended," said Kimmorley, a premiership winner and NSW and Australian halfback.

"And no Cam Munster for the last few weeks - who's the best five-eighth in the competition outside of Cam Munster?

"Jarome Luai will get his chance for NSW, so he might be eligible if he goes that good. Jack Wighton obviously we know can play five-eighth but while his team's struggling I think Jack would just look forward to getting back into camp [where he can] worry about his own game rather than all the dramas happening in Canberra.

"Tom Trbojevic, Nathan Cleary and Daly Cherry-Evans for the last month have probably been the three best football players in the competition, so all I've done is find a position for all of them."

Steve Renouf

After opting for Tom Trbojevic at fullback last month, Broncos champion Renouf has shifted him to centre and recalled Tedesco.

"Out of the two, Trbojevic is probably a bit more effective in the centres because he has played there before," he said. "And just going on size, Teddy just does what he does so well at fullback."

Jarome Luai held his spot at five-eighth.

"It's that combination with Cleary. That's a big thing. If he's got a halfback that will run the show, he's able to do what he wants and that's a good complement with each other," Renouf added.

"I just love the way he's been playing. He's confident. You pick a guy like that who is running red-hot."

Jake Trbojevic earned his first start, with Renouf saying the Sea Eagles lock's "leadership" was an important quality.

"He's been part of turning around [Manly] with his brother back [fit] at the club," the ex-Queensland and Australian star said.

Elsewhere, Renouf found room for Eels fullback Clint Gutherson and Canberra pivot Wighton on the bench.

"In a team that hasn't been playing that well, I think Wighton has stepped up a bit. They're struggling all sorts but he's probably been one of their better players," he explained.

"And Gutho just keeps going. [Parramatta] aren't going that well either but they're both versatile. They can play anywhere."

Acknowledgement of Country

Manly Warringah Sea Eagles 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 Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

Major Partner

Premier Partners

Senior Partners

View All Partners