Lomu tipped to become a ***an
16 October 2006
Former All Blacks rugby great Jonah Lomu has been linked with the Gold Coast ***ans, a National Rugby League (NRL) expansion club.
The Gold Coast Bulletin newspaper in Queensland today reported that the ***ans were poised to sign the big winger for 2007.
The newspaper said it understood Lomu would meet ***ans management tomorrow to discuss a code switch.
It said Lomu, 31, who played 63 tests before his international rugby career ended in 2002 because of a life-threatening kidney disorder, would undergo a tough medical assessment.
***ans management remained tightlipped about the impending deal, with managing director Michael Searle declining to confirm or deny the club was planning to meet Lomu.
Lomu attended the Tri-Nations rugby league test between New Zealand and Australia in Auckland last Saturday.
The Bulletin reported sources close to the Lomu camp saying his move to league was "not a cash grab" but a genuine attempt to make an impact in the sport.
Lomu made his comeback at first-class level in New Zealand this season for North Harbour but struggled for form and admitted his dream of appearing in next year's rugby World Cup was beyond him.
He has been weighing up his options, although there has been no hint that he was interested in pursuing a career in rugby league.
His wife and manager, Fiona, this month said Lomu would consider prolonging his career in Australia's new national rugby union competition next year.
"We certainly wouldn't turn away any conversations with regards to playing opportunities," Fiona Lomu said.
"I guess it's not a common move for New Zealand players but ... the competition's changed a lot both here and in Australia and there are new opportunities that could be something that we would look at."
AdvertisementAdvertisementShe stressed money was not motivating Lomu to stay active in competitive sport.
"Money's never been the primary driver for him ever in his career so it's certainly not how we approach decision-making." [/b]