McClennan looks to Britain for help

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The Independent Online

The Kiwis beat Australia 38-28 in Sydney last Saturday, but lost two key members of their side for the re-match on Friday. Clinton Toopi has a knee injury and the hooker, Lance Hohaia, was thought to have broken leg. That injury has not turned out to be as serious as first feared and both players are in the frame for the British leg of the tournament. For Friday, however, the Kiwi coach, Brian McClennan, has drafted in the Bradford centre, Shontayne Hape, and the Hull utility player, Motu Tony.

Tony Puletua and the Wigan-bound Iefata Paleaaesina have been brought in on the bench, with Wakefield's David Solomona taking over from Frank Pritchard in the starting line-up.

The Kiwis have also called up Bradford's Lesley Vainikolo and Ali Lauitiiti, of Leeds, to join them when they get to England to prepare for their match against Great Britain at Loftus Road on 29 October. But there are no places for Logan Swann of Warrington, Vinnie Anderson of St Helens or Bradford's Robbie Paul, whose international career could now be over.

Australia have made three changes, with Matt Cooper coming in on the wing for the injured Timana Tahu and Trent Barratt and Mark O'Meley on the bench instead of Craig Gower and Andrew Ryan.

The former Wigan forward, Jerome Guisset, has been passed fit for France against England at Headingley on Sunday, despite a thumb injury in the victory over Russia last weekend.

Warrington expect to announce the signing of the Bradford and England forward, Rob Parker, today.

The Wolves have extended the contract of Ben Westwood, a success since switching to the forwards this year. Westwood is out of contract at the end of next season, but will now be at the Halliwell Jones Stadium until the end of 2009.

Castleford have re-signed one of the players who helped them win promotion to Super League. Andy Kain, has agreed a one-year deal. The London Broncos prop Francis Stephenson has joined Hull KR.

Ellery Hanley, who retired 10 years ago after a career with Bradford, Wigan and Leeds, is to be inducted into the game's Hall of Fame tomorrow. The other inductees are the former Wigan and Great Britain captain, Eric Ashton, and the Cumbrian forwards, Douglas Clark and Martin Hodgson.

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