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Sport Former Canberra Raider Kato Ottio turned down St George Illawarra NRL contract for World Cup

06:35  13 january  2018
06:35  13 january  2018 Source:   msn.com

Papua New Guinea rugby league player Kato Ottio dies at 24 after falling ill at training

  Papua New Guinea rugby league player Kato Ottio dies at 24 after falling ill at training <p>Papua New Guinea rugby league player and NRL hopeful Kato Ottio has died at the age of 24 after suffering "a sudden health issue" in training, English club Widnes Vikings has said.</p>Ottio spent two seasons in the Canberra Raiders system but after failing to crack the NRL squad, signed with Widnes in December.

Raiders . Former Canberra Raider Kato Ottio turned down St George Illawarra NRL contract for World Cup . Little Learning School St Leonards, Willoughby Area. Part Time Early Childhood

Kato Ottio collapsed after taking part in an eight-kilometre road run with his former PNG Hunters teammates. Rugby League : Former Canberra Raider Dave Taylor parts ways with Toronto Wolfpack.

Former Canberra Raiders flyer Kato Ottio knew this could be his only chance to represent his people in a World Cup in front of his people.

That's why he turned down an NRL contract with St George Illawarra and was instead heading to England to play for Widnes in the Super League.

Ottio's brother Ahulo jnr made the revelations while delivering his eulogy in front of thousands of people at Ottio's funeral in Port Moresby on Friday.

The 23-year-old had died of what's believed to be heatstroke on Tuesday, after training with the PNG Hunters.

His former Raiders teammates held a memorial service for him in Canberra on Thursday.

Kato Ottio's professionalism potentially contributes to death

  Kato Ottio's professionalism potentially contributes to death The shock death of Kato Ottio may have been caused by his dedication for the game of rugby league.Disturbing details have revealed Kato Ottio's death may have been caused by his will to be a professional role model for his Hunters teammates.

Kato ’s brother, Ahulo Ottio jnr, was moved to tears as he revealed that the 23-year-old had turned down a contract from St George Illawarra Dragons on the eve of the World Cup because it came with the condition he withdraw from the Kumuls squad to undergo surgery before the 2018 NRL season.

Dragons playmaker and former Raider Josh McCrone said a couple of individual errors were ultimately to blame in his side's loss. Canberra Raiders 28 (Bateman 2, Rapana, Lee, Ottio , L Croker tries) def St George Illawarra Dragons 20 (Faifai Loa, Mann, Dufty tries).

Former Raiders Kato Ottio picked PNG over an NRL contract.© Provided by Canberra Times Former Raiders Kato Ottio picked PNG over an NRL contract. The Dragons offered Ottio a contract, but on the proviso he skip last year's World Cup and instead have surgery on the knee that underwent a reconstruction in 2016.

But Ottio was having none of it. He wanted the rare chance to represent Papua New Guinea in Papua New Guinea in a World Cup.

"I lost count of how many times I practically begged him to take up the Saints' offer and forget the World Cup," an emotional Ahulo jnr said.

Raiders to officially honour Kato Ottio

  Raiders to officially honour Kato Ottio The Canberra Raiders will hold a public memorial service on Thursday morning to honour former player Kato Ottio. Ottio tragically passed away on Tuesday after collapsing during a training run with Queensland Cup side PNG Hunters.The 23-year-old’s death stunned Raiders players and staff as well as the wider rugby league community.Ottio spent time in the Canberra Raiders system and was a member or Papua New Guinea’s squad for the 2017 Rugby League World Cup.He was set to travel to England to join Widnes for pre-season training after signing with the club last December.

Image: Canberra Raiders . Kato Ottio loved 'his people' so much he knocked back an NRL contract from the Dragons, so he could take his place in PNG's World Cup squad. Ottio who tragically passed away this week after collapsing while training with QLD Cup squad the PNG Hunters

"I was like 'My goodness, you are young enough to play three World Cups even before thinking of retiring. Are you on drugs?'

"I even lobbied with mum to talk him out of it when he came for a break and to take up the Saints' offer. All that was in vain.

"His response was with a smile and a giggle, oh that annoying giggle when you're being serious. He said 'Yes bro, that's true but I want to play in front of my people. We don't know when the World Cup will come back to PNG and this was my only chance.'

"Seeing him out there with that band of brothers that were able to pull PNG together as one for a short four weeks was something nobody could put a dollar amount to. I'm proud and happy that after all he did what he did and played for his country in the World Cup."

Edmund ousts Seppi to reach first grand slam quarter-final .
Britain's Kyle Edmund reached the quarter-finals of a grand slam for the first time after coming from a set down to oust Italian Andreas Seppi 6-7(4) 7-5 6-2 6-3 in the fourth round of the Australian Open on Sunday. © REUTERS/Issei Kato Tennis - Australian Open - Hisense Arena, Melbourne, Australia The 23-year-old, the only Briton in the men's draw in the absence of the injured Andy Murray, smashed 63 winners to progress to a last eight meeting with Grigor Dimitrov or Nick Kyrgios when Seppi netted after just under three hours on court.

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