Video: Mate Ma'a Tonga stars crack up while mocking each other during fun team photo shoot

They've become a serious force on the field but the Mate Ma'a Tonga rugby league team have proven they're still a hilarious bunch off it at a recent team photo shoot.

Videos shared to players' social media accounts have shown a colourful afternoon as the team came together ahead of this weekend's Pacific Test against Toa Samoa with rookie initiations and light-hearted mocking featured.

At one point, Bulldogs back Will Hopoate teased Titans star Konrad Hurrell about his pronunciation of Kanye West as the centre tried to show off his new shoes.

There was also a bit of fun directed at rookies Robert Jennings and Junior Tatola as the pair were forced to take multiple hard-hit ping pong balls in the back as part of their rookie welcoming to the team.

Mate Ma'a Tonga play Toa Samoa on Saturday night at Campbelltown Sports Stadium in Sydney at 9pm.


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Sam Burgess' social media account at centre of Rabbitohs' sexting-scandal

A sexting scandal will hang over embattled South Sydney when they attempt to keep their NRL premiership dreams alive in tonight's semi-final against St George Illawarra.

The Rabbitohs are in the throes of an investigation into a star player's involvement in an alleged sex video during an online chat with a young woman in May.

News Corp Australia reported verified social media accounts belonging to star forward Sam Burgess is at the centre of the saga.

There was no suggestion Burgess was involved, however it is alleged multiple Rabbitohs players exposed themselves to the 23-year-old woman after a win over the Warriors.

The club revealed that it had contacted the woman on Friday, and that a panel had been established to co-ordinate the investigation alongside the NRL integrity unit.

South Sydney also confirmed that police have laid multiple charges on prop Zane Musgrove over a domestic assault matter.

The developments came less than a day before the Rabbitohs face the Dragons in a final-six clash, with the winner to advance to a grand final qualifier.

Rabbitohs coach Anthony Seibold admitted he was only made aware of the sexting drama on Thursday and that it was up to him to ensure the players' minds were on the job.

"They're professional athletes. I'm a professional coach. So that's our job," Seibold said.

"We've got to make sure that we have a really competent session (on Friday) in the team meeting room, and it's led by me.

"I need to make sure that I'm across what we need to do for tomorrow night's game. We've had a really good preparation so far.

"Obviously it's not ideal that these accusations have come out and they're front page news. It's not what anyone wants, it's not what I want. It's not what our game needs."

Rabbitohs pair Adam Reynolds (shoulder) and Greg Inglis (ribs) are both set to play despite carrying minor injuries from last week's qualifying final loss to Melbourne.

For the Dragons, skipper Gareth Widdop (shoulder) is missing and centre Euan Aitken (hamstring) also remains sidelined.

The winner will meet minor premiers Sydney Roosters for a spot in the grand final.

Sam Burgess of the South Sydney Rabbitohs. Source: Photosport


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'Touch wood that he is okay' - Paul Gallen in doubt for Sharks' tilt at NRL title

Cronulla are bracing for the prospect of being without inspirational captain Paul Gallen for Friday night's blockbuster NRL preliminary final showdown with the Melbourne Storm.

Gallen suffered a shoulder injury in the second half of the Sharks' heart- stopping 21-20 semi-final win over Penrith and is racing the clock to be fit for the grudge match with their 2016 grand final rivals at AAMI Park.

"Gal is just a wait and see. We will get a scan. Touch wood that he is okay but it is a bit unknown," Sharks coach Shane Flanagan said.

"When Gal doesn't come back on, I am real concerned. He usually can just go in and get it strapped up and battle on. For him not to come back in a big semi- final is a bit concerning."

At 37, Gallen delivered one of his best performances of the season before the Sharks needed a Chad Townsend field goal five minutes from fulltime to avoid a shattering loss after having led the Panthers 18-0 at Allianz Stadium.

The Sharks are also sweating on fellow forward enforcer Luke Lewis to recover from a calf injury, but the retiring veteran insists he'll be "sweet"

"I'll be fine mate, to be honest with you," Lewis told AAP.

"I've just got to get through the next couple of days, get all the swelling down.

"But it's just a cork in a crappy position. It is what it is, though. I'm not too stressed about it."

The Sharks are one of the few teams to have the wood over Melbourne, not only famously beating the Storm in the grand final two years ago to win the club's elusive maiden premiership, but also conquering Craig Bellamy's team twice already this season.

"I am obviously excited about it," Flanagan said of the latest match-up for a berth in the 2018 title decider against either the Sydney Roosters, South Sydney or St George Illawarra.

"We have had some great tussles with them obviously from the (2016) grand final. They have been fantastic games.

"We have been lucky enough to win some and unlucky on a couple of occasions or they have been too good for us.

"It is a real challenge going down there on the back of Melbourne having a week off. They will be fresh.

"They will have some players back from suspension (Will Chambers) and injury (Nelson Asofa-Solomona) so we will have to be on our game if we are going to play in the grand final."

Paul Gallen of the Sharks Source: Getty


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Storm skipper Cameron Smith reportedly agrees deal to play 18th NRL season

Melbourne skipper Cameron Smith has reportedly agreed to terms to play an 18th NRL season with the Storm, which will see him pass 400 games.

Ahead of their preliminary final against Cronulla in Melbourne next Friday night, Smith has put pen to paper, according to News Corp Australia.

The 35-year-old made clear through the season his intentions to play on in 2019 but chief executive Dave Donaghy confirmed the parties had reached agreement on Thursday on a $1 million deal.

The Australian captain is the most capped NRL player of all time with 382 appearances - barring injury the new contract will allow him to play past the 400-game mark.

The Storm are set to lose veterans Billy Slater and Ryan Hoffman, who will retire at season's end, so Smith's extension is timely.

Storm skipper Cameron Smith celebrates his drop goal. Source: Getty


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