Featherstone Rovers' star signing Nu Brown fully recovered from Covid setback - after catching virus from Leeds Rhinos ace Rhyse Martin

High-profile Featherstone Rovers recruit Fa’amanu Brown has revealed how his early days in England were marred by a bout of coronavirus - caught from Leeds Rhinos’ Rhyse Martin.

Tuesday, 2nd March 2021, 4:45 pm
Nu Brown, with ball, playing for Canterbury Bulldogs against Sydney Roosters in 2019. Picture by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images.

Brown - known as Nu - played alongside Martin at NRL club Canterbury Bulldogs and has been living with the Rhinos forward, in Leeds, since arriving in England two months ago.

He is now fully recovered and expected to play in Saturday’s pre-season game at home to Oldham, but admitted: “It was quite unfortunate - for the first three weeks I was over here I was fine, but I am living with one of my best mates, Rhyse Martin.

“He contracted Covid and I had to self-isolate with him.

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Rhyse Martin scores for Rhinos in last year's Cup semi-final win over Wigan. Picture by Bruce Rollinson.

“I tried to stay away from him as much as possible, but I contracted it.

“It was quite weird having it, because back in New Zealand or Australia we only get one-to-five cases per month and the whole country goes into lockdown.

“It is so different, but I am lucky to come out the other side okay.”

Brown, 26, said he had “fever, body shakes for two days and then started to lose my taste and smell”, but insisted: “I am fine now.”

He added: “Rhyse was pretty gutted.

“He kept apologising for the first week, because it has been a tough time since I’ve gone there, but we are all good - I love him anyway!

“We played together at the Bulldogs and won the New South Wales Cup Grand Final there and after that year he went on to play at Leeds and he has done well since.”

A Samoan international, who can play stand-off, scrum-half or hooker, Brown was at Cronulla Sharks before joining Canterbury, but his NRL career was disrupted by injuries.

Brown spoke to Martin about the European game before heading for England and said: “He said it’s a lot different, everyone’s extremely strong, but you just need to get used to the cold weather - which I have found quite tough.

“The other day I couldn’t catch a ball because my hands were too cold.

“I was wearing gloves to warm up in on Saturday and the boys were giving it to me, so I’m still trying to get used to it.”

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