Rugby Union


Wests unleash 250kg bash brothers Fotu Auelua and Uelese Uelese

It's the back-row combination which will give club rugby players nightmares for the rest of the season - two Islander powerhouses ready to unleash 250 kilograms of injury frustration.

ACT Brumbies wrecking ball Fotu Auelua will form a tag-team "bruise brothers" combination with former junior Raiders star Uelese Uelese when they play for Wests on Saturday.

The bad news for opponents Easts is that 120-kilogram Auelua and 130-kilogram Uelese are having a competition to see who can "whack" the hardest.

"I guess my job is to pretty much smash people," Uelese said with a laugh.

"I'm excited to play with Fotu, that guy is a machine. A wrecking ball.

"It's just going to be a competition of who can put the biggest shots on, who can knock 'em out, lining guys up and seeing who can whack the hardest."


Uelese, cousin of Brumbies winger Joseph Tomane, was recruited by the Raiders as a teenager and trained with Todd Carney, Terry Campese, Adrian Purtell and Ryan Hinchcliffe.

But he lost his contract after getting caught up in the "wrong crowd" and his NRL dream was over before it began.

He has spent the past six years playing in the Canberra Raiders Cup rugby league competition.

But a meeting with Wests coach Craig Robberds and the introduction of the National Rugby Championships convinced Uelese, 27, it was time to play rugby again.

The former St Edmund's College and Wests junior has not played rugby since he was a teenager.

"One of the reasons I'm still playing is I like to mentor the young guys. I get a lot of joy out helping them realise the value of their talent," Uelese said.

"I was training with the Raiders first grade ... I was an 18-year-old smashing dudes, I was 118 kilograms running the 100 metres in 12 seconds.

"But I never understood what I really had and I want to help guys avoid the mistakes I made."

Auelua is making a comeback of his own.

The enforcer forward was set for the biggest season of his career, and was promoted to the Brumbies' leadership group, before he damaged medial ligaments n a pre-season trial match.

He's been biding his time in the Brumbies rehab group until now.

"You just want to be a part of it by getting out there so you can contribute," Auelua said

"Twelve weeks of rehab is a long time ... I'm just keen to get back out on the field and get some game time.

"I've seen some YouTube highlights of Uelese, he's a destructive bloke. And when you're playing next to him, that gives you a lot of confidence."

Easts are searching for their first win of the season and will be bolstered by the addition of Brumbies winger Clyde Rathbone.


Saturday: Wests v Easts at Jamison Oval, 3.15pm; Royals v Tuggeranong Vikings at Phillip Oval, 3.05pm; Queanbeyan Whites v Uni-Norths Owls at Campese Field, 3.05pm.