Phillipson given chance to make Rhinos mark

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The Independent Online

Leeds could give a run-out to a potential rugby union convert in the revival of a local derby tradition this weekend.

The Rhinos and their city neighbours, Hunslet, are to contest the Lazenby Cup for the first time since 1972 and Leeds plan to field 19-year-old Aiden Phillipson for part of the game.

Phillipson, a winger or full-back who has played for England at every level up to Under-18s, was at Sale last season but asked Leeds for a trial, which he gets on Sunday. The side is captained by Barrie McDermott, who has returned to training early following Great Britain's series against Australia.

Hunslet, who hope to fill their South Leeds Stadium for the match, will be captained by their new signing, Latham Tawhai, who has returned to the club from Hull KR.

The Hull coach, Shaun McRae, who says he is keen to talk to the club about extending his contract, hopes that the prop forward Scott Logan could be ready to play before the initial estimate of a return in May.

Logan is recuperating in Australia after an operation to pin his ankle following an injury-dogged year.

The Rugby League's executive chairman, Richard Lewis, says that he will push for a commitment to a World Cup at the meeting of the game's International Federation in Sydney on 26 January.

The code has fought shy of staging another tournament since the financially disastrous World Cup in 2000.