Tongan weighs in for Paris

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Rugby League


Paris St-Germain plan to unleash an 18-and-a-half stone Tongan prop forward on the London Broncos tomorrow night for a match that will take one side to the top of the Super League.

Kava Utoikamana flew in to Paris this week after spending two years as a professional boxer in America and has been immediately added to the squad for the match at The Valley.

"Kava is not just a heavyweight, he is a huge weight," the Paris chief executive, Tas Baitieri, said of a player who also impressed playing for Tonga in the World Nines last month.

"He will certainly bring some power to our pack and I believe he has got a tremendous future in rugby league."

London will be without their injured centre, Evan Cochrane, with Tulson Tollett moving into his place and Duncan McRae coming in at stand-off for a match that will lift one club into first place until the rest of the programme on Good Friday.

The former Wigan and Great Britain loose-forward, Phil Clarke, has been allowed to leave hospital in Sydney after continuing his recovery from breaking a bone in his neck at the weekend.

The Leigh chairman, Mick Higgins, has banned his players from drinking after Wednesday, following an opening day defeat at Bramley.

"I will not tolerate the attitude I saw at Bramley," Higgins said. "It was bitterly disappointing for me and the fans and the players have had the hard word spelled out to them."

Leeds have scrapped the pre-match entertainment format that was widely criticised after its unveiling for the match against Warrington on Sunday. In future, the club says, they will concentrate on a rugby league theme, without the music and dancing.

The cross-code clash between Wigan and Bath at Maine Road on 8 May is heading for a 32,000 sell-out. That match will be played under league rules, with the return under union rules at Twickenham, also selling well, according to the organisers.