Roger Tuivasa-Sheck's agent denies code-swapping report

Roger Tuivasa-Sheck's agent has come forward this morning claiming a report the Warriors captain is switching to rugby union next year is "total speculation".

Radio New Zealand reports the star fullback's deal is "all but done" with some senior members of the New Zealand NRL team already in the know about the situation despite Tuivasa-Sheck yet to announce the news to the team.

However, Tuivasa-Sheck's manager Bruce Sharrock told the NZ Herald the report isn't true.

"The article that came out is total speculation, very disappointing. Roger is no further ahead in his decision making process than he was pre-Christmas," Sharrock said.

"I have 100 per cent have had no discussion, formal or informal, with the Blues, around the services of Roger Tuivasa-Sheck post 2018".

The deal lines up with Tuivasa-Sheck's current one at the Warriors which finishes at the end of this season.

It wouldn't be Tuivasa-Sheck's first taste of union either - he captained Otahuhu College's first XV and was also selected for the New Zealand Secondary Schools team in 2011 before being signed by the Sydney Roosters.

Soon after signing with the Roosters, Tuivasa-Sheck said he still desired to return to rugby with the dream of one day being an All Black - a goal he has reiterated multiple times since.

RNZ reports Tuivasa-Sheck would play in the outside backs with the Blues his likely destination for a Super Rugby franchise.

Tuivasa-Sheck's manager did however say last October there had been discussions with New Zealand Rugby about a possible switch.

"It's entered discussions, I'm not going to deny that," Sharrock said.

"We've talked about it and we've certainly talked about it before.

"That's his background, the All Blacks are a world-recognised team with an amazing success rate. If you thought you were good enough to be a part of it, it's not a bad ship to be a part of," Sharrock added.

The All Blacks coach says the Warriors captain would be "a good player" in rugby union. Source: 1 NEWS


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Watch as junior Tongan league players welcome Mate Ma’a Tonga stars with rousing sipi tau

Junior Tongan league players gave the Mate Ma’a Tonga stars a rousing welcome, clearly delighting the island kingdom's national team as they arrived in Auckland.

The Tongan Hakula players performed an earth-shattering sipi tau for their heroes as they arrived in Manukau last night ahead of next week's clash with the Kangaroos in Auckland.

The Mate Ma’a Tonga players' phone cameras were held high to capture the special moment as the young players gave the Tongan haka their all.

Mate Ma’a Tonga meet Australia in an historic Test at Mt Smart Stadium on Saturday next week. 

More vision from Mate Ma'a Tonga's arrival in Auckland yesterday

Tevita Pangai made sure team spirit was high as Tonga arrived in Auckland yesterday. Source: 1 NEWS

Hurell and teammate Jason Taumalolo joined fans dancing during their welcome at Vodafone Events Centre in Manukau. Source: 1 NEWS

Despite their flight being delayed a few hours from Sydney the Tongan fans showed their support at Vodafone Events centre in Manukau. Source: 1 NEWS

Auckland welcome The Tongan Hakula players delivered an earth-shattering sipi tau for their heroes in Auckland yesterday. Source: 1 NEWS

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Watch: Jason Taumalolo, Mate Ma'a Tonga lose it as Andrew Fifita gets pranked

Team spirit was in plentiful supply as Mate Ma'a Tonga arrived in Auckland last night, as Andrew Fifita found himself on the receiving end of a classic childhood prank.

As Tonga arrived ahead of next week's clash with the Kangaroos in Auckland, swarms of fans turned out to welcome their side at a special event in Manukau.

Star forwards Jason Taumalolo and Andrew Fifita spoke to media, however, Tevita Pangai Jr managed to leave Fifita's face as red as Tonga's shirt - pulling his pants down in front of the camera.

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For more on this story, watch 1 NEWS at 6pm. Source: 1 NEWS

"That's just how we are," Pangai Jr said.

"We like to have fun, mock each other - it's good."

Tevita Pangai made sure team spirit was high as Tonga arrived in Auckland yesterday. Source: 1 NEWS


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'Everyone makes a mistake' - Kiwis coach embracing Jesse Bromwich's Test return

New Zealand coach Michael Maguire has revealed former captain Jesse Bromwich is a part of the Test nation's leadership group to face Australia.

Bromwich and Kevin Proctor will make their anticipated return to the Kiwis fold on Saturday, almost 18 months after being axed for their role in a cocaine bust.

The pair were caught allegedly snorting cocaine hours after a mid-year Test against the Kangaroos, resulting in their dumping from the World Cup last year.

The scandal cost Bromwich the Kiwis' captaincy, however Maguire this week confirmed the Melbourne prop has been reinstated as a leader in the team.

"He's a part of the leadership group," Maguire told reporters.

"But at the moment he's very much about making sure he does what he needs to to get in the team and perform for the team."

With 41 Tests between them, Bromwich and Proctor will add some sorely needed experience to a youthful line-up at Mt Smart Stadium.

Joseph Manu and Brandon Smith are making their international debuts, while Dallin Watene-Zelezniak has been crowned captain at the tender age of 23.

It comes off the back of the unavailability of stars Roger Tuivasa-Sheck and Issac Luke, as well as the international retirements of a number of veteran players.

Maguire was reluctant to comment further on Bromwich and Proctor's return, but conceded the duo have been presented with a shot at redemption.

"I'm really hoping we can put a stop to all the chat about where they're at. Since I've started the role it's been about Kevvy and Jesse," Maguire said.

"I know talking to them and spending some time with both of those boys, they're really looking forward to being able to put that on the park and show everyone why they have that passion around that jersey.

"Everyone makes a mistake in their life but it's now their opportunity to turn that around. It all starts on Saturday."

Jesse Bromwich and Kevin Proctor have both been recalled to the Kiwis' squad. Source: 1 NEWS


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'We'll have our hands full' – Tonga star Jason Taumalolo says Kangaroos new looked team still a huge threat

Mate Ma'a Tonga star Jason Taumalolo is under no illusion that the Kangaroos will pose threats right across the park come next Saturday in their historic Test in Auckland.

With Cameron Smith, Johnathan Thurston and Billy Slater retired from international football Taumalolo believes the new looked Australian team will be a tough challenge.

"I think regardless they'll always going to be a strong team," said Taumalolo.

"The team that they have picked for this year’s game is no different.

"They might have lost some experience but with that they have got a lot of youth and a lot of talented players."

The Kangaroos have plenty of firepower with James Tedesco, Latrell Mitchell, Tom Tjbojevic, Luke Keary and Damien Cook named to start against the Kiwis this Saturday.

"We'll have our hands full come Saturday."

Taumalolo said without Australia's usual veterans they will have a lot of firepower with their young stars. Source: 1 NEWS


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