For some of the 12 Ipswich State High players picked in the Met West team it may be harder to break into their school’s 1st XIII.
For some of the 12 Ipswich State High players picked in the Met West team it may be harder to break into their school’s 1st XIII. Rob Williams

Wealth of talent helps Met West rugby team

THEY have not all proved to their coach they deserve to be in the school's first choice team yet.

But 12 Ipswich State High School students have been selected in the Met West open rugby league team to contest state titles later this year.

It is the most the school has ever had qualify for the regional representative team, after seven players from the school were in the Met West squad last year.

The selections continue the rise of the school as a rugby league force and are fitting for a team now involved in the Super 6 competition, featuring the best six schoolboys teams in the state.

ISHS rugby league coach Lee Addison believes the number of players selected demonstrates the increased depth in the school's rugby league program this season.

"We may be lacking a (Faitotoa) Faitotoa," he said, referring to last year's star second rower.

"He was unique for his impact on a game.

"But we've got a lot of depth.

"A couple of players in the Met West squad are still fighting for their spots here.

"The mentality we've got is not resting on our laurels.

"You've got to earn your spot in first grade."

The Met West team will be coached by Redbank Plains State High teacher Michael Armstrong.

State titles are at West Arana in May.

In the meantime the Ipswich High firsts continue their preparation for the Super 6, with a trial tomorrow against Sandgate State High at Swifts grounds at Purga.

It will be the first time Addison has fielded his first choice side this season.

"We rested 10 players against Palm Beach Currumbin," Addison said.

"We played the best of the rest in the first half and were down 4-0."

ISHS then beat St Peter Claver 34-14 with both teams resting their Ipswich representative players.

Addison said he would start his first choice side for the opening half against Sandgate.

But he believes he still has 23 players vying for spots in the top squad.

"They're where I want them to be at the moment," he said of his squad's preparation.

"They're still learning how to control a game for a full 60 minutes. Youthful naivety can be hard to coach out. Their skill level I'm happy with."

Among those to have impressed the coach are halfback Ete Ete and outside back Kea Pere.

"It is the third season Ete has been around first grade," Addison said.

"The first game he ever played was at halfback.

"Last year he spent most of his time on the wing.

"It's amazing what a summer growth spurt and a bit more maturity can do."

Pere represented Queensland under 15s last year but has already shown he has the potential to be a standout at opens level.