Italy World Cup utility heads to London Broncos

James Gordon
Ethan Natoli

London Broncos have signed utility player Ethan Natoli, who starred for Italy in the recent World Cup, subject to visa approval.

Natoli, 27, joins international team-mates Dean Parata and Ronny Palumbo in the capital.

He said: “I’m so pleased to have signed for the Broncos. It’s a great club in a historic city with a fantastic culture – I can’t wait to get started.

“I’ve never visited or played in London before, but I’m used to the city life coming from Sydney so it shouldn’t take too long to adjust to my new surroundings.

“I’m excited to be part of the Broncos’ journey and hope we can get some good results next season.”

Australian-born Natoli can play at loose forward, second row or centre and has most recently been with Newtown Jets in the NSW Cup.

He has made seven appearances for Italy, including in their World Cup group games against Scotland, Fiji and Australia, where he started at centre in all three.

World Cup pedigree

Ethan Natoli joins a growing list of World Cup representatives at the Cherry Red Records Stadium.

Fiji half-back Henry Raiwalui signed recently, joining Scotland full-back Alex Walker and Greece pair Adam Vrahnos and Rob Tuliatu.

Wales centre Dalton Grant, Papua New Guinea prop Wellington Albert and Fijian utility Sitiveni Moceidreke are also part of the squad.

They will be coached by Mike Eccles in 2023, after he took over from Jermaine Coleman midway through a difficulty 2022 campaign and steered them to Championship safety.

Eccles said of his new signing: “Ethan is a great addition to our squad, and we’re delighted to have him onboard. He’s a hard-working player who runs hard too and we’re very excited to get him engrained in the squad during pre-season.

“Ethan is a solid utility player who is equally at home as a loose forward, second row and centre. That versatility is great for us, and we wish Ethan a successful time with the club.”

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