Haven to face Widnes side mourning the death of Kato Ottio

Haven to face Widnes side mourning the death of Kato Ottio

The Papua New Guinea worldwide was due to travel to the United Kingdom this week to fulfil his dream of playing first grade rugby with the Widnes Vikings.

The then head coach of the PNG national side, Mal Meninga, noticed Ottio and advised PNG Hunters' - aside in Australia's second RL tier, the Queensland Cup - boss Michael Marum to include him in his squad for the 2015 season.

He was taken to hospital but fell into a coma and never recovered.

THESE 13 stadiums will host matches at the 2017 Rugby League World Cup.

Kato Ottio, a centre for rugby league club Widnes Vikings, has died at the age of 23.

Widnes coach Denis Betts said he was yet to speak to Albert but the club would do whatever was necessary to support the former Penrith Panthers prop.

"I only spoke to him last week about his move to England and he was so excited to be heading over there, one door shuts and another one opens, it was a new adventure for him and I told him it would be great move and wished him all the best", Antonelli said.

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"Kato was always happy and bouncing around, I was talking to Blake Austin this morning and he said the world is so unfair and that only the good ones go early, it's so true".

"It's hard to believe because we had just got bedding and other things like crockery today for the place where he and Wellington were going to live".

'To get this news is devastating, and our thoughts are with his family'.

Stuart said his death had "knocked me for six" and described him as "a very respectful young man who appreciated" the club's efforts to support his career.

Ottio never played an NRL game, but led the try scoring during the 2016 NSW Cup for Mounties and scored a try in last year's World Cup.

There will also be a collection at Friday's friendly against Whitehaven, before which there will be a minute's silence.