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10 to Watch in '24 | Dion Teaupa

After winning The Knock-On Effect NSW Cup with the South Sydney Rabbitohs, Dion Teaupa made his international debut for Tonga to finish a strong 2023 season for the young five-eighth.

The 21-year-old was selected by Mate Ma’a coach Kristian Woolf after 21 NSW Cup appearances for South Sydney, which included six tries, six try assists, five line-break assists and 26 tackle-busts.

Teaupa has shown plenty of promise since progressing through the South Sydney’s Junior Representative pathways, and it earned him a start for the Rabbitohs’ 2023 NRL pre-season trial against the Manly Warringah Sea Eagles in February.

The No.6 made an impression in that game with two tries and a try assist, all before his NSW Cup debut in Round Six.

Teaupa’s speed and quick decision-making had a positive impact on his team as the Rabbitohs went from second last after nine rounds to winning a Grand Final against Minor Premiers the North Sydney Bears, then the State Championship against Brisbane Tigers.

He aspires to develop vision like Cody Walker’s on-field, having learned from him during training with the first-grade squad.

“His (Cody’s) vision is just something that I want to try to learn. Every second I can with him I try to learn and pick his brain, and know more about the game from his side,” Teaupa told earlier this year.

Teaupa’s promising football in 2023 and improvement throughout the NSWRL pathways – from Rabbitohs Under 16s to the NSW Cup – proves he is a player to watch at South Sydney.

If an NRL debut presented itself in 2024, there’s no doubting Teaupa will make the most of the opportunity.

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