Fonua backs Rawsthorne to shine

Outgoing Hull FC star Mahe Fonua has backed young team-mate Nick Rawsthorne to succeed him in the future.

Fonua’s time with the club came to an end when they lost to Leeds Rhinos in the play-off semi-finals last month.

It wrapped up a successful two-year stint for the Tongan international, both collectively and individually, ending his time in Super League with two Challenge Cup medals and two consecutive inductions into the Super League Dream Team.

Inevitably, he will be hard to replace next season, a task Lee Radford is all too aware of.

But before returning Down Under to link up with his new club, Wests Tigers, the 24-year-old endorsed Rawsthorne to take on the responsibility.

“I think Nick Rawsthorne is a great athlete,” said Fonua.

“I was talking to one of the boys about it. Under the right guidance, I think he can be a very dangerous player. He’s got a great physique, perfect height and great ability to get under a high ball and take a good attacking kick. He’s more than capable of filling my boots and I think that will happen in the years to come.”

Meanwhile, Fonua also spoke highly of the club’s new signing, Bureta Faraimo, who is seen by many as the man to replace Fonua next year.

“I know that Bureta Faraimo is a very good signing,” he said.

“He’s strong, fast and has all the qualities needed. They’ve got a very good buy in him.”