Rugby League: Hull discipline two Australian players

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Hull, who have signed two new overseas players with an eye to next season in Super League, have fined two of their existing ones for missing training.

The club, on the verge of the First Division Championship, paid Workington Town pounds 10,000 for the New Zealanders, Brad Hepi and Logan Campbell, just before the transfer deadline.

Hepi could make his debut at Huddersfield on Saturday, in the match Hull need to win to clinch promotion, whilst Campbell needs a new work permit before he can play.

As the Kiwis arrive, Hull have fined two of their Australians, Glen Liddiard and Gary Lester, for missing a training session before last weekend's defeat by Featherstone. The club believes that the two were in Wales, trying to arrange contracts to play rugby union this winter. Tevita Vaikona, the prolific try-scoring centre who missed the match with a knee injury, will be told by a specialist this week whether he can play at Huddersfield.

The Rugby League's director of referees, Greg McCallum, has warned of a sudden upsurge of foul play in last weekend's matches. No less than nine players were placed on report by overworked referees and five of them have been told they must appear before the disciplinary committee tomorrow.

The St Helens forward Derek McVey is charged with striking an opponent, and Stuart Lester of Wigan and Paul Forber of Salford with high tackles. Potentially most serious of all, Kelly Shelford and Nigel Vagana of Warrington are accused of a two-man spear tackle on Forber.

"We are extremely concerned about the number of cases we have had to review this week," McCallum said. "Whilst we wish to encourage vigorous and fair play, it is obvious that some players have returned from the World Club Championship and exploited those principles in too vigorous a fashion."

St Helens will be without their forwards, Apollo Perelini and Dean Busby, for some weeks. Perelini needs an operation on his elbow, while Busby broke his fibula against Oldham on Sunday.

Salford have transfer-listed their Samoan forward, Lokeni Savelio, at his own request. Savelio, who complained about being used regularly as a substitute and who has been listed at pounds 60,000, has been left out of the squad to play in Paris tonight.

Leeds have received a pounds 400,000 grant from the Sports Grounds Initiative to build a new family stand at one end of their Headingley ground.

Jason Robinson and Gary Conolly have been named in a Rest of the World side to play the ARL's Australian line-up in Brisbane on 11 July. They will miss the club's Super League fixture in Paris.