RL Today: Leuluai scores on union bow, Wire blow & NRL deal for Italy ace
Wire injury blow
Wire powerhouse Gil Dudson could miss the early rounds of the Super League season after breaking his hand in their 22-10 win over Leigh in Ben Currie’s testimonial on Saturday. (Warrington Guardian)
Powell told the Warrington Guardian: “Gil Dudson’s broken his hand so I’m not sure how long he’s going to be out. He may well need an operation on that.”
WIRE: Warrington confirm 2023 squad numbers
Leuluai scores on rugby union debut
Wigan Warriors legends Tommy Leuluai and Sean O’Loughlin swapped codes on Saturday to play for Wigan RUFC against Eccles.
Rugby League World Cup winner Leuluai showed some lovely footwork to score on debut!
🚨 New YouTube video 🚨
I went down to @WiganRufc to watch Sean O'Loughlin and Thomas Leuluai play.
What do we think of Tommys try?👏
Hit the link below to watch full video 👇https://t.co/tlwgePrejT@WigToday @WiganRLHistory @WiganFans_RL @wiganrugbyfans #rugbyleague pic.twitter.com/0P72fR1d4r
— Skyrugby (@sky_rugby) February 5, 2023
Italy star set for NRL deal
Italy World Cup half-back Daniel Atkinson is reportedly on the verge of joining Cronulla Sharks for the upcoming season. (The Australian)
The 22-year-old was spotted training with the Sharks last week. Atkinson represented his Italian heritage at last year’s World Cup.
USA international Massey
Castleford’s testimonial man Nathan Massey has revealed his bizarre story behind his one-cap USA career! (Yorkshire Evening Post)
The 33-year-old played for the USA as a 17-year-old in a 70-0 defeat to Cumbria in 2007, despite having no American heritage.
Massey told the Yorkshire Evening Post: “An Aussie fella called Mick Robinson, who was football manager here at the time, was the team manager of the USA. I was just coming through and I had a phone call one day and he said ‘do you fancy playing? I said ‘I will, but I’ve got no allegiance to America’. Some miraculous way he winged it and I got a game. It was a fair old experience for a 17-year-old.”
Leeds injury update
Leeds coach Rohan Smith provided an injury update on his squad following their 26-4 defeat to Hull KR in a pre-season friendly (Leeds Live)
Forward James McDonnell and Derrell Olpherts sat out of the game. Smith told Leeds Live: “He’s (McDonnell) been ill the last few days, he’s desperate to play. He’d have played with a fever of 40 but it wasn’t a smart play so we stood him down.
“He’s (Derrell) got a few things just to check out but we’re expecting that he will be back in full training sometime soon and we’ll take it as it comes after that.”
Featherstone captains for 2023
James Lockwood will captain Championship promotion favourites Featherstone for the fifth successive season in 2023.
Rovers coach Sean Long has also appointed Chris Hankinson and Matty Wildie as the club’s vice-captains.
Featherstone will also have a leadership group, including Elijah Taylor, Caleb Aekins, Jack Bussey, Johnathon Ford and Junior Moors.
Former Great Britain international and Widnes legend David Hulme turns 59 today (February 6).
Also celebrating; Wests Tigers assistant coach David Furner (52), former Australia international Danny Buderus (45), Wales international Elliott Jenkins (24) and Castleford forward Brad Martin (22).
Wigan star Bevan French holds the record for most tries in a Super League game, having scored seven in Wigan’s 60-0 win over Hull last season.
READ NEXT: Championship results and round-up from the opening weekend