Vodafone Junior Warriors standoff Carlos Tuimavave, now ensconced in the club’s NRL side, has been named in the Toyota Cup Team of the Year for the second season running.
But while he was joined by team-mates Omar Slaimankhel and Konrad Hurrell in last year’s side, he’s the only Vodafone Junior Warrior included in the 2012 selection.
Not for the first time, the Vodafone Junior Warriors have attracted minimal recognition despite the team featuring strongly throughout the season and still having a chance of retaining both the minor premiership and the NYC premiership this year.
For the fourth year running no Vodafone Junior Warriors forward has been included although Ligi Sao, Siliva Havili and David Bhana must have warranted serious consideration.
Among the others named are Sydney Roosters players Dylan Napa, son of former Auckland and Otahuhu prop Stan Napa, and another Otahuhu product Roger Tuivasa-Sheck.
The 2012 Toyota Cup Team of the Year features a trainee accountant, a horticulturalist, apprentice carpenters and four university students.
In a showcase of the success of the Toyota Cup as a development pathway since its inception in 2008:
- Ten Toyota Cup graduates have already played State of Origin and 17 have played international football for Australia, New Zealand or England (players listed below)
- Vodafone Warriors and Kiwi Test prop Ben Matulino - a member of the inaugural 2008 Toyota Cup Team of the Year - this season became the first Toyota Cup graduate to play 100 NRL games. He was followed by fellow 2008 Team of the Year members Chris Sandow (Eels) with his Vodafone Warriors team-mate Russell Packer playing his 100th game this weekend
- In round 21 of this year’s NRL Telstra Premiership, 43 per cent of the players were Toyota Cup graduates
- In the same round, the Brisbane Broncos fielded 13 Toyota Cup graduates, with 12 of the 13 also local juniors. The Raiders side featured 12 graduates, 10 of whom were local talent, while the Vodafone Warriors fielded 11, all of whom came through the club’s Toyota Cup system
- 65 per cent of this year’s Toyota Cup players are studying post-secondary school qualifications (23 per cent are studying at University, 35 per cent a Certificate II to Diploma qualification and 15 per cent are doing apprenticeships). Others are either at high school or already in the workforce
- Of the 66 players selected in the Toyota Cup Team of the Year between 2008-2011, 56 have already made their NRL debuts.
This year’s team features five players who have already made their NRL debuts - Wests Tigers excitement machine Marika Koroibete, Edrick Lee, one of three Raiders in the side, Dragons centre Nathan Green, Roosters flyer Roger Tuivasa-Sheck and the Vodafone Warriors utility Carlos Tuimavave, who was selected in the team for the second time.
It also includes Bulldogs forward Paul Carter, the son of Panthers legend Steve Carter and Korbin Sims, the brother of Cowboys duo Ashton and Tariq, with Tariq named the 2010 Toyota Cup Player of the Year.
The 2012 Toyota Cup Team of the Year is:
Fullback: Evander Cummins(St George Illawarra Dragons)
Wing: Marika Koroibete (Wests Tigers)
Centre: Edrick Lee (Canberra Raiders)
Centre: Nathan Green (St George Illawarra Dragons)
Wing: Roger Tuivasa-Sheck(Sydney Roosters)
Five-eighth: Carlos Tuimavave (Vodafone Junior Warriors)
Halfback: Mitchell Cornish (Canberra Raiders)
Prop: David Klemmer (Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs)
Hooker: Michael Lichaa (Cronulla Sharks)
Prop: Korbin Sims (Newcastle Knights)
Second Row: Michael Chee Kam (Canberra Raiders)
Second Row:Vaipuna Tia Kilifi (Penrith Panthers)
Lock: Paul Carter (Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs)
Interchange: Caleb Timu (Brisbane Broncos)
Interchange: Chris Grevsmuhl (North Queensland Cowboys)
Interchange: Luke Keary (South Sydney Rabbitohs)
Interchange: Dylan Napa (Sydney Roosters)
Coach:Garth Brennan (Penrith Panthers)
Each member of the 2012 Toyota Cup Team of the Year will receive a $2000 education grant in addition to the grants clubs already receive for education and workplace training. They also receive a Toyota Cup Team of the Year plaque and polo shirt.
The 2012 Toyota Cup Player of The Year will be named during Fox Sports’ live telecast of the Dally M Awards at Sydney’s Town Hall on Tuesday, September 4.
Popular competitions and giveaways from Gimme.co.nz: NZ's People Powered Guide to Free Stuff. Links will open on Gimme.
Join Voxy on Google+.