Broken jaw ends Wiki's Tri-Nations tour

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The Independent Online

The New Zealand captain, Ruben Wiki, has been ruled out of the Kiwis' final Tri-Nations match against Great Britain with a fractured jaw.

The New Zealand captain, Ruben Wiki, has been ruled out of the Kiwis' final Tri-Nations match against Great Britain with a fractured jaw.

New Zealand's most experienced Test player suffered the injury in France and will join Sonny Bill Williams on the sidelines at Hull on Saturday as the team try to gain some consolation for failing to reach the tournament's final.

Paul Rauhihi takes over from Wiki as prop and captain, with Louis Anderson moving to loose forward for Williams and Dean Halatau starting at hooker.

The one bright spot for the Kiwis, who have also had illness in their camp this week, is that Thomas Leuluai will resume at scrum-half after his dislocated shoulder, with Robbie Paul dropping back to the bench.

"Wiki will be a loss for them," admitted Great Britain's assistant coach, Jon Sharp. "But whoever plays, they won't want to go home with another loss."

Brian Noble will name the British squad for the game today, but the indications are that Chev Walker could be back in contention and Mickey Higham could make his long-awaited Test debut.

The Wakefield and Great Britain utility player, Gareth Ellis, believes his future could now lie with Bradford, after the breakdown of a proposed move to Leeds over personal terms.

"It's disappointing that a potential move has gone, but there are other clubs interested and I'll have to consider what they put in front of me," Ellis said. "Bradford are a very good club and one where I think I could have a bright future."

The international disciplinary panel which was scheduled to rule last night on the striking charge against Australia's Mark O'Meley has been postponed until a video link can be established to France, where the Kangaroos are preparing to play on Sunday.

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