Lauaki making big impression

Epalahame Lauaki
Epalahame Lauaki

TONGAN wrecking ball Epalahame Lauaki has made an early impression on his new team-mates after linking up with the Warriors this week.

The former Hull FC prop –Wigan’s only confirmed recruit for 2012 – has settled in to his new surroundings. Fellow front-rower Lee Mossop said: “He’s fitted in well.

“I saw him in the gym and he looks like he’s in really good shape.

“I was impressed with him last year, and I can confidently say he won’t be as fit then as he will be at the end of this pe-season.

“We played Hull twice and he was good then.

“He’s a big, strong unit, aggressive and he’s skilful as well. You wouldn’t expect that from such a big man, but he’s definitely got that in him.

“He will be as fit as he ever been after this pre-season, I think he’ll be a good addition.”

Lauaki is currently Wigan’s only confirmed signing but the club is expected to formally announce the captures of Wales forward Ben Flowers and Gil Dudson within the next few days.

Their arrivals have been known for some time and Warriors even left three shirt numbers vacant in their squad. The third could go to an NRL centre.

KIWI Jeremy Smith has withdrawn the challenge of his one-game ban for illegal use of the forearm on Sam Tomkins in last Saturday’s 28-6 loss.

Issac Luke has also now accepted a two-game suspension for twisting Rangi Chase’s leg.

FORMER St Helens and Great Britain centre Paul Loughlin will be signing copies of his autobiography, From Grass to Glass, at Wigan’s Waterstones, in the Grand Arcade, from 11am this Saturday November 19.

Australian Matt Cecchin will referee the Gillette Four Nations final between England and Australia at Elland Road on Saturday, November 19 (6.00pm).