David Fusitu'a: Leeds Rhinos' former New Zealand Warriors winger granted work permit - here's what happens next

Test winger David Fusitu’a has been given the green light to join Leeds Rhinos.

By Peter Smith
Friday, 26th November 2021, 12:09 pm
David Fusitu'a. Picture by Andrew Cornaga/www.photosport.nz/Photosport Ltd 2018
David Fusitu'a. Picture by Andrew Cornaga/www.photosport.nz/Photosport Ltd 2018

The Tonga and former Kiwi international, who signed for Rhinos in October, has received a visa and is set to join up with his new club in the middle of next month.

Rhinos began pre-season this week, but Fusitu’a, who was released by New Zealand Warriors in order to begin a two-year contract in Betfred Super League, has been granted extra time off to visit family.

Warriors were based in Australia last season because of the coronavirus situation and the 27-year-old spent most of the year apart from his family in New Zealand.

Rhinos are now in the process of booking flights and he is due to travel to America to visit relatives before heading from there to the UK.

England duo Mikolaj Oledzki and Kruise Leeming were back at the club today, leaving Fusitu’a as the only player yet to begin preparations for the 2022 campaign, which begins with a home clash against Warrington Wolves on Saturday, February 12.

Liam Sutcliffe, who is recovering from knee surgery, remains on the casualty list, but everyone else took some part in training on Tuesday and coach Richard Agar could have a virtually full-strength squad to select from for the Boxing Day challenge game against Wakefield Trinity.

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Former St Helens forward James Bentley is expected to begin contact training in around two weeks’ time following a back injury which ended his 2021 campaign in September.

Rhinos have not confirmed their full pre-season schedule, but will visit dual-registration partner club Featherstone Rovers - now coached by ex-Leeds boss Brian McDermott - in mid-January.

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