rugby league

Tonga to unleash Hopoate, Jennings and Fifita

The Bulldogs have been subjected to heavy criticism for announcing their players would not be available for the May 7 City-Country match at Mudgee but that is due to scheduling as they play North Queensland just four days later.

If NSW coach Laurie Daley had advised that he wanted any specific Canterbury players to play City-Country with a view to assessing them for State of Origin selection, the Bulldogs would have allowed them to do so.

Toa Samoa keen on Anthony Milford return

The 22-year-old Broncos star represented Samoa at the last World Cup and told the Courier Mail he was available to face England in May.

International eligibility laws were relaxed last year, allowing eligible players to nominate both a tier one and tier two nation to represent, with no stand-down periods and the ability to switch multiple times.

Milford is free to play for Samoa if he's overlooked by Australia and could even play for both this year, as well as the Queensland State of Origin team.

Kiwis forward set to become richest player in league

The Dally M medallist is on the verge of signing a 10-year contract worth over $10 million with North Queensland, according to a News Corp Australia report.

The deal, which will see 24-year-old Taumololo become a Cowboys players for life, dwarfs that of superstar teammate Johnathan Thurston who signed for $5 million four years ago.

An official announcement of Taumolo's re-signing is expected as early as today.

"We are very hopeful of keeping Jason," Cowboys chairman Laurence Lancini told News Corp Australia.

England v Samoa Test to headline Pacific triple-header in Australia

Wayne Bennett's England squad will play the mid-season game ahead of the World Cup in Australia, New Zealand and Papua New Guinea, which starts in October.

In addition, Fiji will play Tonga and Papua New Guinea face the Cook Islands.

Campbelltown Sports Stadium is one of the outgrounds used by NRL club Wests Tigers, and has a capacity of 20,000.

BBC reports the last time England and Samoa met was in the 2014 Four Nations, which ended in a 32-26 win for the northern hemisphere side.

Parker in Warriors’ corner for NRL nines

The role was offered - and promptly accepted - during a surprise visit to Mount Smart Stadium yesterday.

He stunned the players when he greeted them in the gym as they returned from a field session.

Bedecked in the club’s 2017 Nines jersey (‘Te Toka Tu Toa’ - The Warrior Rock), Parker had his WBO world champion belt with him as well as the Downer NRL Auckland Nines trophy.

While the players were understandably wary about getting too close to the Nines trophy (a prize they’re striving to win for the first time), the glittering world champion belt was irresistible.

Rugby league star Andrew Fifita shares despair, redemption in Christchurch

The 27-year-old NRL prop for the Cronulla-Sharks arrived in Christchurch from Sydney with his wife, Nikki,​ and two young children on Wednesday morning.

Fifita, who is Tongan and Aboriginal, was invited to speak to whanau in east Christchurch ahead of a Pacific Series 2016 tournament at Wainoni Park on November 11 and 12. 

Fifita did not hold back as he talked candidly about his upbringing in a state house in Western Sydney, his "troubled teenage life", the harsh realities of his professional football career, battles with weight gain and his descent in to depression. 

Kiwis go down in Perth to Kangaroos after lacklustre effort

In a test that was short of thrilling moments, Australia put in a workmanlike performance to record their second straight win over the No 1 team in the world.

The Kangaroos outscored the Kiwis five tries to one, with a big problem for New Zealand being knowing what the right move should be when attacking on the last tackle.

The spark that guided them to the outstanding 26-12 win over the Kangaroos in Brisbane last year, just wasn't there and other than the big runs from Jason Taumalolo, there were few 'wow' moments from players in black and white jerseys.

International tests should be priority says Fiji Rugby league CEO

should be a priority to both players and clubs.

"Without diminishing the value of the clubs they play for, and the importance of upholding their contracts, they should value international teams more," he said.

"We need to make sure they notice that in order to level the playing field for all countries and teams, we need to prioritize international tests," he added.

Naleba says the celebration of 30 years of Rugby league in Samoa is an improvement for Samoa and shows the ability to host big matches such as this.

Toa Samoa Upolu Residents secure win against Toa Savaii Residents

Over the weekend, Toa Samoa Savaii residents hosted the Upolu Resident’s team in a provincial all-star showdown that pretty much went one sided.

The Upolu Toa Residents pulling easily in the beginning of the match with a final score of 38 to 10 to seal a win in their first clash in the inter-island rivalry since its establishment last year.

However, it wasn’t the win that mattered to Rugby League Samoa Development officer Latu Joseph Kelemete.

Toa Samoa Head Coach applauds new move by RLIF

This follows a bold move by the Rugby League International Federation to change its eligibility rules now allowing eligible players to nominate one tier one team, and one tier two team to represent.

Players can also switch between their two countries multiple times within a World Cup Cycle.

The biggest trouble Samoa Rugby League has been dealing with is the previous eligibility law that really tied down players of Pacific descent from competing for their nations.

“The rule changes are a massive positive for Rugby League leading into the 2017 World Cup.”