RL Today: Wane to remain, Burgess future & Samoa star to Roosters?
Wane to remain
Shaun Wane is set to stay on as England head coach after getting the backing of his players. (Yorkshire Live)
Wane has had his contract extended by the Rugby Football League and will lead England into the 2025 World Cup in France, according to Yorkshire Live.
The RFL will make an official announcement on the head coaches of England’s men’s, women’s and wheelchair teams at midday today.
Hodgson feeling fitter than ever
Josh Hodgson can’t wait to make his Parramatta debut in Thursday’s NRL opener against Melbourne.
The England international had his season cut short last year due to an ACL injury whilst playing for Canberra. But the Hull-born hooker is raring to go for the Eels this week.
Hodgson said: “The rest of my body is absolutely fine. I’ve not played a game of footy in a while. The rest of my body is fine, both knees are really good and I’ve done a full pre-season which is the first one in a while so my body feels really fit. It’s probably the best I’ve felt in a long time to be honest.”
Samoa star to the Roosters?
Penrith Panthers have announced that Samoa powerhouse Spencer Leniu will leave the NRL champions at the end of the season. He has been linked with a move to Sydney Roosters. (The Age)
The 23-year-old has made 61 appearances for the Panthers since his debut in 2019. He has won five caps for Samoa and played in the World Cup final last year.
The Age report that he is set to join his Samoa team-mate Stephen Crichton at the Roosters in 2024.
England powerhouse Tom Burgess says he is very close to agreeing a new contract with South Sydney Rabbitohs in the NRL.
Burgess said: “It’s going well. I don’t think we are too far off getting a deal done to be fair. I’m really positive about hopefully re-signing with Souths.
“Souths have gave me a lot coming over from another country, they’ve been a big part of my family. I love it here and I couldn’t really imagine myself playing for another club in the NRL. I want to try and get it sorted before Saturday, but we’ll see, sometimes it can take a little bit longer but I’m just really happy to be staying with Souths.”
Whitehead’s 16th pre-season
England international Elliott Whitehead will enter his eighth season in the NRL when Canberra travel to North Queensland on Saturday.
The 33-year-old has through the ranks at hometown club Bradford and enjoyed a spell in France with Catalans Dragons before moving to Canberra in 2016.
Whitehead said: “It’s been a long pre-season! I think its my 16th pre-season. It has been a long one but its finally Round One this week, so we’re looking forward to getting out there.”
Hodgson’s additional role at Hull KR
Hull KR have confirmed that assistant coach Dave Hodgson will also lead the club’s Reserves in 2023.
Hodgson is currently assistant coach to Willie Peters alongside Danny McGuire and Brett Delaney.
Hull KR can confirm Dave Hodgson will coach the club's Reserves team alongside his first team duties in 2023 🙌
Good luck, Hodgy! 👊#UpTheRobins 🔴⚪️ pic.twitter.com/9BdC8hHcgI
— Hull KR (@hullkrofficial) February 27, 2023
Former St Helens speedster Darren Albert turns 47 today (February 28).
Also celebrating; ex-NRL hooker Nathan Friend (42), ex-Oldham forward Sam Gee (36), Wakefield forward Kevin Proctor (34), Salford forward Andrew Dixon (33) and Newcastle Thunder forward Brad Gallagher (23).
Hull KR forward James Batchelor made his 100th career appearance in last Friday’s 24-10 win at Salford.
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