A whole Loto of a player for Eagles

Mark Aston
Mark Aston
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New signing Lelauloto Tagaloa is aiming to make up for lost time after delays in joining Sheffield Eagles.

The USA international centre – nicknamed Loto - is set to make his debut in the Tetley’s Challenge Cup third round clash with East Leeds.

Lelauloto Tagaloa

Lelauloto Tagaloa

Frustrating delays in obtaining a visa forced Tagaloa to miss the start of the season and he arrived in the UK last weekend.

The 26-year-old has found the Sheffield weather a bit of a shock but has no regrets about swapping Hawaii and his part-time job as a fire dancer for playing rugby at Owlerton Stadium.

“I’d heard a lot about Sheffield, the players they have here and it’s a good club – a good place but right now it feels freezing to me,” he said.

Coach Mark Aston is set to start Tagaloa in Sunday’s game (kick-off 2pm) but has not decided what long term will be the best position for the player who is 6ft 4ins and 16 stone.

“It’s great to have Loto here,” said Aston. “We will certainly have a look at him on Sunday at Owlerton - give him a big blast out.

“He’s a big boy and we need to use his strengths for the team. He’s got number four as his squad number and we’ll have a look at him in the centres but I’m keen to see him in the back row [of the pack].”

Tagaloa, a Samoan who qualified to play for the USA in last year’s World Cup by being at University in Hawaii, is looking forward to playing but admits the Challenge Cup is a bit of a mystery.“I don’t know a lot about the Cup but I treat every game as a big one,” he said.