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Taufua weighs up World Cup allegiances

Manly's Jorge Taufua will cap a brilliant sophomore NRL season with a World Cup appearance - but he's not sure whose jersey he'll be pulling on.
Taufua weighs up World Cup allegiances
by AAP

By Joe Barton

SYDNEY, Oct 7 AAP - Manly's Jorge Taufua will cap a brilliant sophomore NRL season with a World Cup appearance - but he's not sure whose jersey he'll be pulling on.

The blockbusting winger scored 21 tries this season, including one to open the scoring in Sunday night's 26-18 grand final loss to the Sydney Roosters.

That form may not have earned him a Dally M winger-of-the-year nomination but it has shot him into calculations for Tim Sheens' Australia squad to be named later on Monday for the tournament which start later this month.

Representing Australia was a goal Taufua, who made his representative debut for City Origin this year, set himself in the off-season.

But should he be overlooked, there will be no shortage of suitors - with the 21-year-old also eligible for both Tonga and Samoa.

"I'm just waiting at the moment - waiting to see when the final squads for Australia get announced," he told AAP.

"If I'm not (picked), I get to choose out of Tonga and Samoa because those are my background.

"This year (after) playing for City and being eligible for (NSW in) Origin, Australia is definitely my first option.

"But I haven't got my hopes up or anything.

"It would be an awesome achievement for myself (in my) second year.

"To play in the World Cup was one of the goals I set myself this year."

Manly could perhaps have considered themselves unlucky losers on Sunday night with several key decisions, including a crucial missed pass in the lead-up to Shaun Kenny-Dowall's second-half try.

Like Sea Eagles coach Geoff Toovey, he didn't want to criticise the refereeing performance - but said he felt the Sea Eagles were denied the rub of the green throughout 2013.

"To be honest that's happened all year to us," he said.

"We've had a couple of calls that haven't gone our way all year.

"To be honest, we just move on.

"I don't know about Tooves, he does his own thing, but I just try to stay as far away (from refereeing controversy) as I can.

"I'm disappointed but I'm glad we came this far."




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