Canberra Raiders prop Josh Papalii has reportedly pledged his allegiance to Samoa for the upcoming Rugby League World Cup held in England later this year.
Papalii has dabbled in the Samoan and Kangaroos camps in the past with four games with Samoa and 11 with the Kangaroos.
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The Maroons veteran is the latest Australian eligible player to commit to a Pacific Island nation, joining Panthers duo Jarome Luai and Brian To’o.
“As an older player, I feel like it’s a movement I just don’t want to be missing out on,” Papalii said.
“Just seeing the likes of a few of the Penrith boys coming out and I’ve had few text messages from other players who haven’t come out yet saying they’ve put their hand up for Samoa.
“I have put my hand up to play for Samoa. Mal Meninga knows that and I’ve had a coffee with Mal as well to speak about what I’m planning to do… but that’s a long way from here, anything can happen in the next hopefully eight weeks.”
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Papalii represented Samoa at the 2017 World Cup but has since pulled on the green and gold of Australia.
“I guess probably my last World Cup wasn’t the best, I sort of treated it as a little vacation and probably drank a bit too often, ate more than I should have,” he admitted.
“I’m looking to just play a bit of World Cup for the Motherland and represent my wife and my kids and especially my parents as well and just make Samoa proud.”
This year’s Rugby League World Cup will be hosted in the United Kingdom, making it Papalii’s third appearance in the major tournament, being his second with his native country of Samoa.
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