Sio Siua Taukeiaho makes boxing debut on Paul Gallen vs Justin Hodges undercard, NRL Roosters star EXCLUSIVE

Departing NRL premiership Sio Siua Taukeiaho will make his boxing debut next week on the undercard of Paul Gallen and Justin Hodges.

Taukeiaho confirmed to Wide World of Sports that he has returned from England in time to receive a medical and enter the ring in Sydney on Wednesday night.

No Limit Boxing is yet to confirm an opponent for the former Roosters mainstay, but an announcement is expected in the coming days.

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Taukeiaho, 30, has been in the UK representing Tonga at the Rugby League World Cup. If his nation had reached the cup final and played this Sunday (AEDT), he would almost certainly have watched his boxing dream sail by.

Officials were still unsure if he would make it back to Australia in time to pull on the gloves.

“It’s been a pretty crazy 48 hours to be honest,” Taukeiaho told Wide World of Sports.

“Obviously I was disappointed that we (Tonga) didn’t go further in the World Cup but it’s obviously a blessing in disguise now.

“I landed (in Australia) from the UK and had to rush straight to the doctor to get my medical treatment and blood tests. They were telling me that if I didn’t finish them by mid-day (Thursday) all the effort to rush me home and extra practice would have been wasted, but I’m thankful it’s over now.

“I haven’t been told exactly who I’m fighting yet but I believe it’s someone with NRL experience. It doesn’t really matter to me though, I’m just excited to get in there and give it a crack.”

Taukeiaho played 167 NRL games for the Roosters and won two premiership titles with the Tricolours. He will now go to the Super League to play for the Catalans.

Although he has no boxing experience to speak of, No Limit has struggled to find an opponent willing to step into the ring with the 100kg Tongan wrecking ball.

“It’s pretty rare that we’re in a position with a big Main Event and can’t match someone debuting, so obviously the boxing types have scouted him,” No Limit Boxing manager George Rose told the paper earlier. a week

Gallen, who will retire from boxing after his rematch with Hodges on Wednesday, named Taukeiaho as the most likely former NRL star to take his place as the big-money fight arena.

Gallen has earned millions in his 17 fights – 14 wins and one draw – and Taukeiaho recognizes the potential of his career inside the ring.

“Gal has shown us football lads that there are opportunities out there in the fight game if you’re willing to work hard, but I’ve got to back that as well,” he said.

“I’m confident, excited and looking forward to putting on a show on Wednesday night.”

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