Top 9 Youngsters to Watch - 2019 Rugby World Cup

As the 2019 Rugby World Cup approaches in Japan, we look at some of the young backline players that could make a big impact.


Emiliano Boffelli
Age
23
Height
1.91
Weight
91kg
Position
Centre/Wing
SR team
Jaguares


Profile: 

The youngster featured in the Junior World Cup three times before he was selected for the Jaguares Super Rugby Team. Boffelli was also nominated for the World Rugby Breakthrough Player of the Year in 2017.

Boffelli has a silky running style, is equipped with electric pace and is good under the high ball. Emiliano also has a massive boot and can kick conversions from up to 50 metres out.

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Reece Hodge
Age
23
Height
1.91
Weight
94kg
Position
Utility Back
SR team
Rebels

Profile: 

After suffering an injury setback back in 2013, the youngster came back stronger than ever and was selected for the Rebels Super Rugby team in 2016. Since then he's made a huge impact the Super Rugby comp - scoring over 200 points. Hodge was called up for the Australian national team in the same year.

In 2017 he played a huge role in the Wallabies second Bledisloe Cup fixture against the All Blacks, where they won 23 - 18. Hodge scored a try and made two huge conversions from the 50-metre mark.

Equipped with a great skill set, big boot, strong ball carrying and defence. Hodge is set to make a big impact at the 2019 #RWC.



Jesse Kriel
Age
24
Height
1.86
Weight
95kg
Position
FB/Centre
SR team
Blue Bulls

Profile: 

Kriel was selected for the Springboks in 2015, making him 'Bok number 867. Kriel is now a regular starter at outside-centre for his country.

His physicality and stamina make him a huge asset on defence and in crash ball situations.

Kriel is also quick on his feet and has a quick change of direction with his languid yet devastating step. Count on Kriel to be a reliable centre in this 2019 Rugby World Cup.

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Reiko Ioane
Age
21
Height
1.89
Weight
102kg
Position
Wing/Centre
SR team
Blues







Profile: 

The World Rugby Breakthrough Player of the year in 2017 has made a huge impact already for the All Blacks, with standout performances in the Rugby Championship and his consistency in Super Rugby. He was also one of the most prolific Kiwis during last year's British and Irish Lions series.

Ioane made his sevens debut at just the tender age of 17 back in 2015. His Sevens venture was to be short-lived, however, as he quickly advanced to higher honours and has now become a mainstay for the All Blacks since making his International debut at 19.

The Prodigy is well in line for a long illustrious career for New Zealand.  He's incredibly quick off the mark and has an eye for the try-line. The youngster is also strong with his carries and has a lethal fend off.

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Damian McKenzie
Age
23
Height
1.75
Weight
81kg
Position
Utility Back
SR team
Chiefs







Profile: 

The wonder kid who pulls off a smile before he kicks a conversion. He stands not too tall in stature but is one of the most influential players on the rugby field.

McKenzie plays with lots of heart and uncanny skill. The standout player for the Chiefs in the Super Rugby competition in 2016 where he finished as the top try scorer and was named twice SANZAAR's Player of the Season.

 McKenzie is great under the high ball, electrifyingly quick, and is involved in a massive part of tries scored. Definitely, a player to watch in this 2019 #RWC.



Jacob Stockdale
Age
22
Height
1.91
Weight
102kg
Position
Utility Back
Team
Ulster







Profile:

Stockdale was always earmarked to be a great Irish representative after he represented Ireland in both U20 World Rugby Championships in 2015 and 2016 competitions.

Stockdale was part of the recent Irish team that won the Grand Slam. He set a new record for the most number of tries at a Six Nations tournament.

Stockdale uses the spaces he's given to create or set up tries but is usually the one crossing over the whitewash for the Irish. With Ireland serious contenders for this coming Rugby World Cup, this could be Stockdale's moment of glory.

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Huw Jones
Age
24
Height
1.86
Weight
96kg
Position
Utility Back
Team
Glasgow







Profile:

Jones, who recently won a Currie Cup in 2017 with Western Province. He then made the switch back to Scottish side Glasgow Warriors.

The youngster made his International debut in 2016 and has scored 50 plus points for his national team. Jones is extremely quick off the mark and can easily change direction whilst in full flight.

One of the most complete backs we've seen in a while - big in defence and attack, he's sure to make a positive impact for Scotland at this coming #RWC.



Matteo Minozzi
Age
21
Height
1.75
Weight
77kg
Position
Full Back
Team
Zebre







Profile:

The youngster made a name for himself in the recent Six Nations tournament after his Player of the Tournament nomination which came after scoring four tries in his five matches.

He made his debut in 2017 at age 20, Minozzi has played in 13 Test's so far scoring 40 points in total.

The full-back is quick off the mark and does well at grounding over the whitewash whilst under pressure. The big stage will be set and Minozzi will have a point to prove against some of the best teams in the world.





Teddy Thomas
Age
24
Height
1.85
Weight
90kg
Position
Full Back/Wing
Team
Racing 92








Profile:

The wing has scored 40 points in his 10 Test's for France - making his debut in 2014 against Fiji. During this year's Six Nations tournaments he's started five matches and scored three tries.

Easily spotted by his dreadlocks, the wing has a great step, quick acceleration, and easily finds a way to beat defenders at will. Thomas will play in his maiden World Cup and will look to make a statement to the world audience.


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