No international call-up for Matai
THE international career of controversial Manly centre Steve Matai could be finished after he was overlooked for the Kiwis train-on squad for next month's Test match against Australia in Townsville.
The 28-year-old has played 12 tests since his debut in 2006. He missed the 2010 Four Nations tournament through suspension and was injured for last year's post-season Test match and the 2012 Anzac Test.
The match against Australia on October 13 is seen as an important part of the preparation for next year's World Cup.
It is believed Matai's indifferent form at the end of the season, on top of the suspension he served for his shot on fellow Kiwi and Bulldogs winger Sam Perrett, didn't go down well with the selectors.
Instead, they have plumped for 23-year-old Manly utility Dean Whare, who has been added to the train-on squad with Sea Eagles teammate Kieran Foran and Souths hooker Issac Luke.
A large number of Kiwis will line-up in Sunday's grand final and are expected to dominate the final 19-man squad to be named on Tuesday.
Kiwis train-on squad: Broncos - Gerard Beale, Josh Hoffman; Sharks - Jeremy Smith; Manly - Kieran Foran, Dean Whare; Cowboys - Jason Taumalolo, Antonio Winterstein; Penrith - Sam McKendry; Rabbitohs - Issac Luke; Roosters - Jared Waerea-Hargreaves; Warriors: Ben Henry, Shaun Johnson, Simon Mannering, Alehana Mara, Ben Matulino, Elijah Taylor, Manu Vatuvei, Wests - Adam Blair, Benji Marshall.