Malta name sevens team
MALTA coach Joe Grima has named a 12-man squad to participate in the Orara Valley Rugby League Sevens tournament at Coramba on January 22-23.
Malta will be led by ex-Sharks NRL star Ben Sammut while the NRL Premier League will be represented through Newcastle Knights star Daniel Spiteri and Wests Magpies playmaker Ryan Borg in joining Parramatta Eels Jersey Flegg's Simon Micallef in a strong lineup.
MRLA Spokesperson Anthony Micallef said Malta is fielding its best possible lineup, albeit no NRL players were released to represent the minnow nation.
The Galeas from the Tigers and Panthers, Vella from Parramatta and even Matt Gafa at the Raiders were all high on our selection list but their respective clubs couldn't release them.
"I'm nothing less than confident that the team selected will produce 110 per cent when they pull on the red and white," Micallef said.
"Ben Sammut will lead the boys well and add to that the abundance of talent we have from Premier League and Jersey Flegg and Malta's going to give all the teams a go."
Maltese officials are confident of taking on all the big teams and wont hold back, not even if they're drawn to meet the Barbarians team that will be made up of ex-NRL stars including Fittler, Girdler and Spud Carroll.
"Bring them on, well put it to them all," Micallef said.
"We're going up there to do nothing short of winning the tournament."
Malta Knights: Steven Azzopardi (Seven Hills, Parramatta A grade) Ryan Borg (Wests Magpies Premier League), Paul Harris (University, Illawarra Cup), Paul Galea (Illawarra Cup), Willie Grech (Sydney Bulls, Jim Beam Cup), Jeremy Lateo (Burleigh Bears, QLD Cup), Paul Marzella (Burleigh Bears, QLD Cup), Simon Micallef (Parramatta Eels, Jersey Flegg), Brendan Russell (Brothers, Mackay DRL) Ben Sammut (University, Illawarra Cup-Ex Sharks NRL), Daniel Spiteri (Newcastle Knights Premier League), Matt Zammit (Blacktown City).
Head Coach- Joe Grima, assistant coach- Tony Farr, manager- Mark Sultana, trainers Peter Cassar, Dallas Weston.