Raynor ends lean spell in union with Hull return

Hull have welcomed back their former winger, Gareth Raynor, after an unhappy year in rugby union with Leicester. Raynor signed for the Tigers last year, but made only three first team appearances and has now bought out part of his contract in order to return to Hull on a two-and-a-half-year deal.

"We always said that if he could get a release from Leicester we would be very interested in taking him back," said the Hull coach Shaun McRae. "I don't think he's settled and I always thought he was better suited to league, but I don't blame him for having a go."

Raynor played one game back on loan to Hull, against Halifax earlier this season. "He played really well for us against Halifax and I think that got his interest going," said McRae. "He knows a lot of the players here and the way we like to play the game."

With three of their regular threequarters - Toa Kohe-Love, Richie Barnett and Matt Crowther - injured he is certain to go straight back into the side for tonight's match against Wakefield Trinity.

Wakefield expect to be without their veteran half-back, Brad Davis, and the Australian back-rower, Troy Slattery, for the game at the KC Stadium.

New South Wales have clinched the State Of Origin series in Australia by winning the second match 27-4 in Sydney yesterday.

The Newcastle Knights winger, Timana Tahu, strengthened his grip on a wing position for the Ashes series against Great Britain this autumn by scoring the last two tries.

Ben Kennedy, Matthew Gidley and Anthony Minichiello were the other try-scorers, with Andrew Johns setting the seal on another dominant half-back performance with three goals and a drop goal.

That display came after the New South Wales coach, Phil Gould, had predicted that his side would be beaten, because they had trained so poorly in the build up to the match.

The Queensland coach, Wayne Bennett, has suggested that the profits from the series - the second game was played in front of a full house of 80,000 at the former Olympic Stadium - should be used to persuade representative players against defecting to rugby union or to England.

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