UFC heavyweight star Tom Aspinall has revealed his links to rugby league and his recent run in with England boss Shaun Wane on the latest official Rugby League World Cup podcast.
Aspinall, 29, has a professional record of 12 wins and three losses in his career, and recently headlined UFC London earlier in July.
Unfortunately, his night and the fight ended prematurely, falling to a knee injury just 15 seconds against opponent Curtis Blaydes.
A title contender, ranked number #6 in the world, Aspinall was the latest guest on the This Is Impact podcast from the official Rugby League World Cup.
The Salford-born fighter revealed his father, Andy, played alongside England boss Wane as youngsters.
Aspinall joked about a time he saw the former Wigan head coach, offering his services. He told presenter Charles Paterson: “I saw Shaun Wane at the train station. Personally, I was going to London to get stitches out of my knee and he was going down for some talks and stuff like that.
“I said ‘Look, if you want me to have a game when my knee is better, I’ll come back and have a game’ and he was laughing. I said I was being serious and if you want me come do a bit, I’d love to.”
Tom Aspinall and his links to rugby league
Aspinall’s father has worked with clubs such as Wigan and Salford coaching. And the fighter discussed his history with rugby league.
“I have played a bit of rugby myself,” Aspinall said. “I’ve never played union, only league. I really enjoy rugby.
“I love fighting. Fighting is my thing. Anything physical, I enjoy it. I’ve been involved in rugby a little bit myself. I still make time to watch it and I enjoy it. I’m a big supporter of any contact sport where you’ve got to put your body and your mind on the line. I like that kind of stuff.
“I’d gladly have a game. I guarantee if I get the ball and I ran at someone full blast, they’re not going to stop me. If I get a ball and I’m running at a rugby player who doesn’t know the stuff I know about grappling, I guarantee they won’t get me to the floor.”