NRL

Tonga expelled from International Rugby League

The Tonga National Rugby League has been suspended since October, after it sacked national head coach Kristian Woolf over disagreements around control and finances, which led players to threaten a boycott of the World Cup 9s and end of season tests.

International Rugby League recommended a package of reforms for the sport in Tonga in December, at the end of a two-month investigation into the operation and governance of the game in the country.

Broncos ready to unleash 18-year-old Tonga star Tesi Niu at NRL Nines

But caretaker coach Kurt Richards has predicted Niu will make a name for himself when the livewire fullback makes his Broncos debut at the NRL Nines starting in Perth on Friday.

Richards - who will hold the Broncos reins for head coach Anthony Seibold in WA - admitted he could not wait to unleash Niu after witnessing the teenager's meteoric off-season rise.

Niu was a surprise standout for Tonga at last October's World Cup Nines but was still not expected to feature in the Mate Ma'a's end of season Tests last year.

Sharks block Josh Morris' request

Josh Morris, 33, was reported to have requested a move to the Roosters to play alongside his brother Brett.

Sharks coach John Morris confirmed the veteran was considering his options, but ruled out a move for the New South Wales representative.

"There was an enquiry there around Josh's side and I think our fans and members deserve the full truth," he told the NRL website.

Sonny Bill Williams allowed to cover Betfred logo on jersey

Super League chief executive Robert Elstone says an agreement has been reached with Betfred - one of the UK's biggest betting companies. Gambling is considered 'haram' or forbidden in Islam, along with other practices like drinking alcohol. 

Williams converted from Christianity to Islam in 2009 and was the first Muslim to play for the All Blacks. 

"I think the matter has been resolved in satisfactory fashion," said Elstone. "I have say a big 'thank you' to Betfred for the way they've managed this.

Michael Cheika swaps Wallabies for NRL coaching role with Roosters

Sydney's Daily Telegraph reported that Cheika is assisting Roosters coach Trent Robinson - a longtime friend - by working with the Sydney club's coaches and the players' attacking skills.

"He is helping push myself and the assistant coaches to improve and challenging our ideas and helping push us again in 2020," Robinson said.

Cheika quit the Wallabies after five years in charge following their Rugby World Cup quarterfinal defeat in 2019.

Paramatta Eels star Sivo granted bail

The 26 year-old winger is alleged to have indecently assaulted a female staff of a resort on Denarau.

The incident is alleged to have taken place on Boxing Day.

Sivo’s lawyer Mosese Naivalu in court pleaded for his client to be released on bail and stated that the Paramatta Eels winger was scheduled to return to Sydney later this week for pre-season training.

Bail was granted by Magistrate Peni Dalituicama, however a stop departure order was placed on Sivo.

The case will be called again on the 7th of January 2020 for plea.

     

Tonga blasts IRL over proposed rugby league reforms

International Rugy League (IRL) confirmed this week it had recommended a package of reforms for the sport in Tonga, following the conclusion of a two-month investigation into the operation and governance of TNRL.

Mitchell could make Tigers move

The Tigers withdrew an offer for the Australia star last month after the Roosters took a contract offer for the 22-year-old off the table.

Mitchell.did not rule out remaining in Sydney with the premiers but has reportedly been told by the Roosters he will be unable to stay on due to salary-cap restrictions.

Wests chairman Lee Hagipantelis revealed Roosters counterpart Nick Politis has been in touch to notify him of Mitchell's availability.

Aussie legend warns NRL sides against signing Israel Folau

After Folau and Rugby Australia last week settled their legal dispute, a number of NRL clubs are reportedly now vying to bring the sacked Wallabies fullback back to the 13-man code.

The Broncos have already rejected any notion of bringing Folau back to Suncorp Stadium. However, the prospect of signing the 91-game veteran could prove tempting for a struggling NRL side.

Speaking to Australia's Big Sports Breakfast today, though, Daley outlined why Folau isn't worth the risk for any of his potential suitors to take.

Tongan star Michael Jennings to stay in the NRL through until 2021

The 31-year-old looks set to end his NRL career at the Eels after inking a new deal that will keep him at the club until the end of 2021.

The Tongan international's signing is another boost for Parramatta, who have added Reagan Campbell-Gillard and Ryan Matterson to their already impressive 2020 roster.

Last year's wooden spooners Parramatta were one of the big movers in 2019, finishing fifth in the regular season before bowing out in the semi-finals while thrashing Brisbane 58-0 along the way.