Year 12 student, Taine Riori, from John Paul College has been selected for the Australian Barbarians Rugby team, due to go up against Samoa in September.

That’s not all though, he’s also just been named in the URC Under 19 Brisbane City team, a key development pathway for talented young rugby players.

It’s been a whirlwind season for Riori, having also represented Queensland in the Australian Schools Rugby Championship in July.

“I was shocked but honored to be chosen to represent my country. Playing rugby professionally is a dream and this selection is a step in the right direction”, he said.

He’s played in the John Paul College First XV for three years in a row in The Associated Schools competition and captained the side in 2019. TAS is a Queensland school sporting association providing students of its member schools with fierce competition and opportunities to progress to an elite level. Taine represented TAS in its Under 16 Representative Rugby team in 2017 and in 2018 was also selected for the TAS Open Representative team.

“With the selection of the TAS boys in the Queensland teams, it shows we have some talented players in our competition”, said Riori.

Riori values his time playing rugby at school and mentions that the mentorship of Mr Steve Cuthbert, John Paul College’s recently retired Head of Careers and Pathways, has meant a lot to him both on and off the field.

Not one to do things by halves, Riori also plays for the Sunnybank Rugby Club in the Under 19 Colts team and has been a member of the Met East Under 18 rugby team for two years.