Dylan Edwards and Nicho Hynes in staggering snub for World Cup

Nicho Hynes and Dylan Edwards, pictured here in action in the NRL.
Nicho Hynes and Dylan Edwards have both been overlooked for Australia's World Cup squad. Image: Getty

NRL fans and pundits have expressed their disbelief after Dylan Edwards and Nicho Hynes were both overlooked for Australia's World Cup squad announced on Monday.

Mal Meninga unveiled Roosters star James Tedesco as the Kangaroos' new captain for the Rugby League World Cup in England, starting later this month.

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The Roosters fullback replaces Boyd Cordner, who was skipper for the Kangaroos' last Test in 2019, while South Sydney forward Cameron Murray will be Australia's vice-captain.

There are 13 debutants in Meninga's squad, who begin their World Cup defence in Leeds against Fiji on Saturday, October 15.

However the Dally M medallist and Clive Churchill medallist aren't among them, with Hynes and Edwards both overlooked for selection.

Premiership-winning Penrith captain Nathan Cleary is among the debutants and will jostle with incumbent Daly Cherry-Evans to wear the No.7 jersey.

"Daly is the incumbent as well, so he was there three years ago and had a really good season, particularly in Origin,” Meninga said on Monday.

“Origin is considered the biggest series of the year, we will consider all options, that is what a tour is about.

“Everyone will have an opportunity to prove that they deserve to be at the back-end of the tour.

“All players will get an opportunity to play and put their hand up to play at the back-end of the tour when it does matter.”

Mal Meninga, pictured here during the clash between the Australian PM's XIII and PNG PM's XIII.
Mal Meninga looks on during the clash between the Australian PM's XIII and PNG PM's XIII. (Photo by Bradley Kanaris/Getty Images) (Bradley Kanaris via Getty Images)

In the hotly-contested battle for the No.9 roles on tour, Rabbitohs hooker Damien Cook has also missed out on the 24-man squad but will remain on standby.

Meninga has banked on Queensland's winning State of Origin formula, with Maroons duo Ben Hunt and debutant Harry Grant set to rotate the hooking role as the Kangaroos seek a third-straight World Cup title.

“Extremely difficult,” Meninga said of the decision to leave Cook out of the squad.

“We made a decision that we want to go with two hookers and a third one with utility value, which is Reuben Cotter. Damien has been a great servant and was the incumbent but we felt the two hookers we picked are going a little bit better than him at the moment.

“Api (Koriosau) is in the same situation. He obviously played in the premiership-winning side but we felt that the Queensland hookers were best placed to be in this squad.”

Dylan Edwards, pictured here speaking to fans at BlueBet Stadium after Penrith's grand final triumph.
Dylan Edwards speaks to fans at BlueBet Stadium after Penrith's grand final triumph. (Photo by Jenny Evans/Getty Images) (Jenny Evans via Getty Images)

Uproar over Nicho Hynes and Dylan Edwards snub

Cook, Hynes and Edwards are the three players on standby, but many believe they deserved to be in the squad.

Meninga has gone with South Sydney fullback Latrell Mitchell as his back-up for Tedesco, while Bulldogs five-eighth Matt Burton won a spot ahead of Hynes.

"Our best player is a fullback (and our captain) James Tedesco," Meninga said.

"It's difficult. We had several conversations about this and unfortunately Dylan misses out.

"We have some excellent options at fullback and touch wood Teddy is there for the entire time.

"(Edwards) is desperately unlucky."

Veteran journalist Phil Rothfield tweeted: "Cannot recall a Kangaroos World Cup team being chosen without the Dally M Medal winner and the Clive Churchill Medal winner."

Hynes and Edwards both had incredible seasons, with Hynes winning the Dally M with a record 38 votes, and Edwards the man of the match in the grand final after finishing fourth in Dally M voting.

Australia's World Cup squad

Josh Addo-Carr, Matt Burton, Reagan Campbell-Gillard, Patrick Carrigan, Daly Cherry-Evans, Nathan Cleary, Lindsay Collins, Reuben Cotter, Angus Crichton, Tino Fa'asuamaleaui, Campbell Graham, Harry Grant, Valentine Holmes, Ben Hunt, Liam Martin, Latrell Mitchell, Cameron Munster, Cameron Murray (vc), Jeremiah Nanai, Murray Taulagi, James Tedesco (c), Jake Trbojevic, Jack Wighton, Isaah Yeo.

with AAP

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