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

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.

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 .

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.

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.

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.

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 .

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 .

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.

Kato Ottio's death questioned after PNG rugby league star collapsed during training with 'possible heat stroke'

  Kato Ottio's death questioned after PNG rugby league star collapsed during training with 'possible heat stroke' Questions are being raised over the death this week of Papua New Guinea's rising rugby league star, and former Canberra Raider, Kato <g class="gr_ gr_5 gr-alert gr_spell gr_inline_cards gr_run_anim ContextualSpelling ins-del multiReplace" data-gr-id="5" id="5">Ottio</g>.&nbsp;One of the hospitals which treated him after the 23-year-old collapsed during a run at training said it was likely he suffered from severe heat stroke.

World Cup . 2017 Season Review: St George Illawarra Dragons. Cameron McInnes re-signs with the Red V. Latest News. First look at Angus Crichton’s amputated finger. Former Raiders winger Kato Ottio dies after ‘sudden health issue’ in

Forums Rugby League - Australia St George Illawarra Dragons R.I.P Kato Ottio . Kato Ottio dead: Former Canberra Raiders rugby league player passes away aged 23 League. Kato Ottio in his PNG jersey ahead of the World Cup . Picture: David Buller/ NRL ImagerySource: Supplied Former

"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."

Melbourne rally for sixth straight NBL win .
Melbourne United have joined the Perth Wildcats at the top of the NBL ladder claiming a sixth straight victory with a gutsy 79-77 win over the Illawarra Hawks.Signed two weeks ago as a replacement for injured import Casey Prather, American forward Carrick Felix featured prominently with 19 points, 10 rebounds and three steals, as Melbourne overturned an 18-point third quarter deficit to claim their sixth straight win.

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