Local boys in NZ team

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Four South Canterbury rugby players have been named in the New Zealand Heartland team.

They are Nick Strachan (flanker, Celtic), Willie Wright (halfback, Celtic), Miles Medlicott (first five-eighth, Waimate) and Regan O’Gorman (lock, Christchurch).

Head coach Mark Rutene said the standard of the Mitre 10 Heartland Championship had been impressive in 2019 and he was looking forward to assembling the team.

“We have a really good balance of players who will be new to the team and those who have been involved in past campaigns.

“It is great to be able to reward players who have performed well in their provincial colours over the past few months.”

North Otago has the biggest representation in the 26-man squad with five selected; fellow Meads Cup finalist Wanganui has two and Thames Valley which led the competition through to the end of the round robin has one.

The New Zealand Heartland XV will play three matches.

The matches

November 2, v New Zealand Marist, Boyd Park, Te Aroha.

November 6, v Vanua Fiji, Churchill Park, Lautoka, Fiji.

November 9, v Vanua Fiji, Lawaqa Park, Sigatoka, Fiji.