Lancaster joins Australia's squad for Perth SVNS

Fri, Jan 19, 2024, 5:31 AM
Rebels Media
by Rebels Media

Australia has confirmed their sides for the home Perth SVNS event, with both coaches revealing changes for the third event of the World Series.

One of the Melbourne Rebel's latest signings, Darby Lancaster has been recalled to the Australian Men's Sevens Squad.

Lancaster has been cleared by the Melbourne Rebels to play in the event after signing a two-year deal. This comes off the back of a breakout season on the World Series and donning the Gold Jersey with the Junior Wallabies in South Africa.

The speedster's meteoric rise in 2023 is a testament to his work ethic and physicality, scoring 20 tries in just 34 matches in the seven-player format.

John Manenti's side has also seen a boost from the return of Henry Hutchison and Matt Gonzalez.

Don’t miss HSBC SVNS Perth in 2024: 26-28 January at HBF Park. Get your tickets now!

Hutchison has not featured since succumbing to an ACL injury almost 12 months ago in Sydney, with Gonzalez picking up a rib injury in the opening round in Dubai.

As revealed by last week, Michael Hooper will not feature as he continues to prepare for his Sevens switch.

Nick Malouf will captain the side, missing last year's event in Sydney with an ankle injury.

“It is unfortunate to not have ‘Hoops’ available for Perth, however we are looking to Paris and playing the long game with him – he’s certainly working hard to be ready as quickly as possible," Manenti said in a statement.

“Nonetheless, it is such a massive boost for us to get ‘Hutch’ back. He means so much to us and he does so much for the group on and off the field. As we know, ACL injuries are tough to come back from, and Henry has worked incredibly hard to be able to make it to Perth – it will give us some additional inspiration.

“I want to thank the Melbourne Rebels for allowing us to bring back Darby Lancaster for Perth – he was with us all last season, so I expect it won’t take him too long to get up to speed with the guys; we saw what a great Sevens player he is all last season, so it’s a boost for us to get him back."

As for the Women's side, head coach Tim Walsh confirmed 18-year-old Heidi Dennis will be the latest debutant in the side.

Dennis is a cross-code sensation, originally linked with the Brisbane Roar in the A-League Women's competition before focusing on the seven-a-side game.

Since then, the Queenslander has helped Australia to gold at the Youth Commonwealth Games, coming in for Demi Hayes after her season-ending ACL injury.

“Everyone in the squad is pumped about the opportunity to perform in front of our home crowd in Perth – though we are well aware of the need to be disciplined and focus on our performance," Walsh said.

“We are not an outcome-focused team – we continue to adhere to our philosophy of ‘process and performance’. Our desire is to execute our individual roles and put on a show for Perth and Australia.

“We have selected a strong and experienced team which includes a debutant in Heidi Dennis, who replaces the talented Demi Hayes. Heidi performed incredibly well during preseason tournaments against the world’s best teams in New Zealand and Fiji.

“After a memorable debut in Dubai, Kaitlin Shave went on to score the winning try in the Cape Town Final to make it two from two for the Australian Women’s team. Kaitlin has retained her spot in the team and combines with our other speedsters Bienne [Terita], Faith [Nathan] and Maddi Levi”

Every round of the HSBC SVNS series will be shown exclusive, ad-free, live and on demand on Stan Sport. 

Australia Women’s Sevens team for Perth SVNS: 

2. Sharni Smale

3. Faith Nathan

4. Dominique Du Toit

5. Teagan Levi

6. Madison Ashby

7. Charlotte Caslick (c)

8. Kaitlin Shave

10. Bella Nasser

12. Maddison Levi

13. Heidi Dennis*

22. Bienne Terita

55. Alysia Lefau-Fakaosilea

65. Sariah Paki

Australia Men’s Sevens team for Perth SVNS

1. Henry Hutchison

2. Ben Dowling

3. Henry Palmer

4. Dietrich Roache

5. Tim Clements

7. Josh Turner

9. Matt Gonzalez

10. Nick Malouf (c)

11. Maurice Longbottom

12. Nathan Lawson

14. James Turner

23. Darby Lancaster

25. Hayden Sargeant

*Denotes potential debut.

Australian Sevens Perth 2024 Schedule

*All times AWST (AEDT)


Friday, January 26

Australia v USA - 4:14 pm (7:14 pm)

Australia v Great Britain - 9:13 pm (12:13 am Saturday)

Saturday, January 27

Australia v Ireland - 2:11 pm (5:11 pm)


Friday, January 26

Australia v South Africa - 3:28 pm (6:28 pm)

Australia v Great Britain - 8:27 pm (11:27 pm)

Saturday, January 27

Australia v Canada - 11:54 am (2:54 pm)