Narromine product Pat McCutcheon has been delighted to see so many promising youngsters from NSW named in an extended Junior Wallabies squad.
The 53-strong squad, which features Bathurst talent Rory Suttor, will take part in four training sessions in the lead-up to the Oceania Rugby Under 20s Championship on the Gold Coast in April next year and the 2018 World Rugby Under 20s Championship.
McCutcheon, now the NSW Rugby Elite Youth Development Manager, said the fact 22 of the 53 players are coming through the NSW Generation Blue program is proof of the state’s strength.
“The number of NSW Generation Blue boys named in the extended squad is a testament to the rapid growth of our program,” he stated.
“The program is about identifying talented rugby players who have the potential to become a professional athlete. The program … focuses on education, health and nutrition, physical and mental wellbeing.”
Suttor is one of those players involved with the program and the while he faces stiff opposition to earn a spot in the national side his form this season has been eye-catching.
Suttor played in 11 of the 18 regular season games the Sydney University colts firsts contested this season and on each of those occasions, ranked in the best on ground.
He crossed for four tries on the way to helping the students claim the minor premiership, including a double in the win over Warringah.
Suttor nabbed another try in the semi-final and in the W McMahon Shield decider which Sydney University won 63-15 over Eastern Suburbs.
Australia has been grouped with New Zealand, Wales and Japan for the under 20s World Championship.