The making of Coast rugby star Tate McDermott
RUGBY UNION: Believe it or not, Sunshine Coast teenager Tate McDermott won't be Australia's most inexperienced player at this weekend's Sydney International Sevens.
The 17-year-old Grammar graduate has enjoyed a dream start to 2017, after he was rushed into the Australian squad ahead of last week's Wellington Sevens.
He earned a re-call for tomorrow and will be joined by three un-capped players in the 13-man squad for one of the highlights on the HSBC World Series Sevens tour at Allianz Stadium.
With one cap to his name, McDermott will be the ninth-most experienced player in the squad. He's also number one on the Sunshine Coast Sports Federation's list for Junior Sports Star of the Month.
He'll be joined this weekend by Brandon Quinn (NSW), Lachie Anderson (NSW) and Sunnybank's Liam McNamara (QLD).
They'll face a daunting first-up assignment against New Zealand (10.42am AEST), before games against Scotland and Papua New Guinea in the afternoon and evening.
Australia finished tenth in Wellington and could face another uphill battle as coach Andy Friend continues to blood young players into the side, like McDermott.
"I'm looking for these guys to be the future so they've got to show me that they've got what it takes to be the future,” he said.
"Just because they're getting a start doesn't mean they've made it, it's just an opportunity for them to show me what they've got.”
McDermott told the Daily he was "shocked” after his initial call-up following the Darwin Sevens.
He has also been contracted to Queensland Reds' under-20s for 2017 and spent a week training with the senior squad prior to joining Australia.
"When I got the call I was just stoked because I've always wanted to play for the Reds,” he said.
"Being around the likes of (Semu) Kerevi and the boys was great experience.”