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Brumbies add three to Super Rugby EPS squad

Jordan Smiler has been added to the Brumbies Extended Playing Squad

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Article Published: Tuesday 9 October 2012|

The Brumbies have now filled three of the five Extended Playing Squad (EPS) placed for the 2013 Super Rugby season with the addition of Jordan Smiler, Josh Mann-Rea and Ruan Smith.

With the squad on annual leave during October, the three new faces have taken the opportunity to get ahead with their programs and settle into life in the Australian Capital, filtering through Brumbies Rugby HQ for weights and conditioning sessions.

All three players have arrived in Canberra with plenty of top-line experience both in Australia and overseas.

Mann-Rea returned to Australia in 2012, to the NSW Waratahs, having spent the three years prior playing in Japan with Kyuden Voltex in Fukuok. One of three hookers in the Brumbies stocks for the 2013 season along with Stephen Moore and Siliva Siliva, Mann-Rea has played with several of his new team mates while part of Waratahs Academy in 2006, including Dan Palmer and Scott Fardy.

After an injury to the Waratahs hooker Damien Fitzpatrick, the NSW club offered Mann-Rea a short term deal in Sydney, late in the 2012 season and he made his Super Rugby debut against the Stormers in Cape Town. One of several players among the 2013 Brumbies to have perfected his craft as a junior in Queensland, Mann-Rea has represented Australia at Schoolboys, Under 19’s and Under 21’s in the past.

“This is a great opportunity for me, coming back to Australia I was hoping to continue my career, so to be able to it with the Brumbies is exciting,” Mann-Rea said.

“The Brumbies have developed one of the world’s most effective rugby programs over the last 12 months from the ground up. Speaking with Jake and Laurie there will be plenty of opportunities for me to improve my own game and to contribute to the program itself.

“I’m enjoying my rugby and have settled into Canberra nicely. My wife Sam and baby moved down last week so everything seems to be running smoothly.”

Smiler will transfer his world-class sevens skills to the 15-man game in 2013, slotting onto the side of the scrum at blind-side flanker. Tall, fast and athletic, Smiler adds plenty to the Brumbies in attack and at the set piece.

A former New Zealand Sevens squad member, Smiler made the transition to Australia prior to making his national debut. He instead debuted for Australia in 2011 while playing for Northern Suburbs in Sydney’s Shute Shield alongside Zack Holmes and Scott Sio.

Along with an impressive sevens resume, Smiler has plenty of experience playing 15-man rugby. He grew up in New Zealand’s Waikato region and played several seasons of ITM Cup out of Hamilton.

Like Mann-Rea, Smith made his Super Rugby debut with another Australian team when he claimed two caps for the Western Force against the Crusaders and Blues in 2012. A South African by birth, Smith moved to Brisbane from Cape Town at 16 where he was selected to play for the Australian Schoolboys.

Moving back to South Africa for his final year of school, Smith made the transition to the South African Schoolboys making him one of few players to have worn both the junior Boks and Wallabies jumpers. Despite his South African roots Smith qualifies as an Australian player.

A big, physical prop, Smith will use his opportunities in 2013 to learn from world-class scrummagers like Ben Alexander, Dan Palmer and Stephen Moore to become the complete front-rower.

Jordan Smiler

Nickname: Jordy
Height: 193cm
Weight: 107kg
DOB: 19/6/1985, Palmerston North, New Zealand
Position: Flanker
Juniors: Church College of New Zealand, Hamilton
School: Church College of New Zealand, Hamilton
Colts: Waikato
Senior Club: TBA

Josh Mann-Rea

Nickname: Bongo
Height: 181cm
Weight: 105kg
DOB: 19/2/1981, Narromine, NSW
Position: Hooker
Juniors: Noosa Pirates (Rugby League)
School: Nudgee College
Colts: Souths Brisbane
Senior Club: TBA
Brumbies Player No: Uncapped
Super Rugby Debut: 2012 v Stormers, Cape Town
Super Rugby Caps: 1

Ruan Smith

Height: 188cm
Weight: 123kg
DOB: 24/1/1990, Vryburg, South Africa
Position: Prop
Juniors: Paarl Gimnasium School
School: Paarl Gimnasium School
Colts: Western Province
Senior Club: TBA
Brumbies Player No: Uncapped
Super Rugby Debut: 2012 v Blues, Auckland (Force)
Super Rugby Caps: 2

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