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Romanian Oaks name RWC training squad

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worldrugby.org     29 Jun 2015     Getty Images

Veteran number 8 Ovidiu Tonita is set to appear in his fourth Rugby World Cup after being called up into Romania’s 36-man training squad.

Tonita, who turns 35 in August, played at the 2003, 2007 and 2011 versions and was also a non-playing squad member for the Oaks' RWC 1999 campaign.

The Aix-en-Provence player won the last of his 70 tests in an 18-13 defeat to Japan in Bucharest back in November.

While Tonita provides invaluable experience to the Oaks’ squad, the inclusion of overseas born pair, South African loose forward Johannes van Heerden and Tongan centre Paula Kinikinilau, who are playing their club rugby in Romania, heralds something of a new dawn both in terms of selection policy and the style of play Romania are likely to adopt in England.

Van Heerden, of the Baia Mare club, was particularly impressive in the recent Romania U23s match against England Counties, while Kinikinilau is seen as a key figure in the backs as Howells attempts to broaden the Oaks’ approach beyond their traditional forward, power-based game, and to some success judging by performances in the recent Nations Cup-winning campaign.

Romania RWC 2015 training squad:

Forwards: Paulica Ion (USAP), Mihai?a Lazar (Castres), Andrei Ursache (Carcassonne), Constantin Pristavi?a (CSM ?tiin?a Baia Mare), Hora?iu Pungea (Oyonnax), Alexandru ?aru? (Timi?oara Saracens), Andrei Radoi (Timi?oara Saracens), Otar Tura?vili (Colomiers), Mihai Adascali?ei (CS Dinamo), Valentin Popîrlan (Timi?oara Saracens), Johannes van Heerden (CSM ?tiin?a Baia Mare), Marian Drenceanu (Timi?oara Saracens), Marius Antonescu (Tarbes), Valentin Ursache (Oyonnax), Mihai Macovei (Colomiers), Viorel Lucaci (CSA Steaua), Stelian Burcea (Timi?oara Saracens), Ovidiu Toni?a (Aix-en-Provence), Vlad Nistor (Castres), Randall Morrison (Timi?oara Saracens),

Backs: Florin Surugiu (CSM Bucure?ti), Valentin Calafeteanu (Timi?oara Saracens), Tudorel Bratu (CS Dinamo), Danu? Dumbrava (CSA Steaua), Michael Wiringi (CSM ?tiin?a Baia Mare),Paula Kinikinilau (Timi?oara Saracens), Florin Vlaicu (CSM Bucure?ti), Csaba Gal (Universitatea Cluj), Florin Ioni?a (CSA Steaua), Robert Dascalu (CSA Steaua), Adrian Apostol (CSM ?tiin?a Baia Mare), Ionu? Botezatu (CSM ?tiin?a Baia Mare), Ionu? Dumitru (CSA Steaua), Dorin Manole (Orthez), Catalin Fercu (Saracens), Sabin Stratila (CSA Steaua).