One of the form players this sevens season, especially on the domestic stage, Stanaway looked to be a near lock to join the side that would travel to the Gold Coast this April to contest in the Commonwealth Games.
However, he has been dropped alongside Luke Masirewa, Kurt Baker and Tone Ng Shiu.
“When we are leaving out players like Teddy Stanaway it shows the strength and depth we are building,” coach Chris Laidlaw said.
Laidlaw said that with players returning from injury, the squad for tournaments in the USA and Canada was his hardest selection since taking on the job in 2017.
Instead, Laidlaw has opted to bring Trael Joass and Dylan Collier back into the squad after the pair suffered injuries in Cape Town and missed the Sydney and Hamilton tournaments, and also included rookie 21-year-old Ngarohi McGarvey-Black. Etene Nanai-Seturo, who was recently signed by New Zealand Rugby after they reached an agreement with the Warriors following mediation, has retained his place in the side.
Nanai-Seturo had signed with the Warriors on a five-year deal in 2015 as a 15 year old.
Laidlaw’s side will play Uruguay, Argentina and Scotland in pool play at the USA tournament.
He said the focus was firmly on winning the two tournaments and his side was not yet looking ahead to the Commonwealth Games in April.
“The goal is to win. The Commonwealth Games is just around the corner but we’re not resting players for that – we are going as strong as we can, and we want to win.”
- Conor Leathley/Stuff