USA Eagles captain Todd Clever has been added to the BGC APBs squad for next week’s GFI HKFC Tens.
The openside flanker – the first American ever to play in Super Rugby – led the USA at last year’s Rugby World Cup and has previously featured prominently for his nation’s sevens team.
Clever is joined in the APBs squad by three other stars from the 2011 World Cup, Samoan duo Seilala Mapusua and Junior Poluleuligaga and Tonga’s Viliami Ma'afu.
Hard-hitting centre Mapusua started all four of Samoa’s pool games at the World Cup while Poluleuligaga was used as a replacement.
No.8 Ma’afu was a key figure for Tonga in their World Cup campaign, scoring a try in the 31-18 win against Japan and featuring strongly in their famous 19-14 victory over France.
The new quartet are part of an impressive APBs lineup headlined by World Cup winner and 100-cap All Blacks legend Mils Muliaina, and his former New Zealand teammate Justin Marshall.
Two of Asia Pacific rugby’s brightest young talents have also been added to the team. Hooker Tomohoro Kawanishi is quickly earning a reputation in Japan while Fijian Alfred Dakuitoga has been tipped as a future star.
Oxford University captain John Carter, who led his team to victory over Cambridge in the Varsity Match at Twickenham last December, is another addition to the squad.
“The BGC APBs will, without doubt, be the team to watch out for at the Tens,” said Len Harvey, Executive Managing Director and General Manager, Asia Pacific, BGC Partners.
“The squad is packed full of players with World Cup, Super Rugby, English Premiership and Japan Rugby Top League experience and is balanced with some truly exciting up-and-coming youngsters.
“The APBs will be coming to the Tens to entertain, score plenty of tries and, hopefully, lift the Cup.”
The Tens will take place at Hong Kong Football Club from March 21-22.
Muliaina and company will play under the title BGC APBs following a decision by the team to drop their Barbarians title to avoid confusion with the famous UK-based team.
"After convivial discussions with Barbarian FC, and with the increased profile the APBs are having, particularly with our Chartis Cup match against Saracens in June here in Hong Kong, we agreed it was best to stop using the Barbarians name," confirmed APBs chairman Jon Phelps.
"We have too much respect for what they have achieved in more than 120 years as a club and we are looking forward to welcoming them here in 2013.
"We certainly did not want there to be any confusion that there is any sort of link between the clubs, except for both having a desire that the game continues to grow.
"We also feel it would be better for our own identity as we seek to establish ourselves in Asia Pacific rugby. For now, we will simply be known as the APBs, although we may come up with a new 'B' name in the future."
BGC APBs squad: Mils Muliaina (New Zealand), Justin Marshall (New Zealand), Takuro Miuchi (Japan), Hale T-Pole (Tonga), Vilimoni Delasau (Fiji), John Carter (England), Orene Ai’i (New Zealand), Fa'atonu Fili (Samoa), Todd Clever (USA), Seilala Mapusua (Samoa), Stephen Brett (New Zealand), Nemani Nadolo (Fiji), Viliami Ma'afu (Tonga), Junior Poluleuligaga (Samoa), Tomohoro Kawanishi (Japan), Alfred Dakuitoga (Fiji). Coaches: Tana Umaga (New Zealand), Filo Tiatia (New Zealand). Manager: Epi Taione (Tonga).