The New Orleans Gold have added another player for the 2018 Major League Rugby season in the form of Matt Hughston. A versatile player skilled as both a flanker or center, the 28-year-old who hails from Charlotte, North Carolina, is well known in American rugby circles having represented the Junior All-Americans at the 2009 IRB (World Rugby) Junior World Trophy and has since been a regular with the USA South Panthers. In 2016 Hughston starred with the Ohio Aviators of PRO Rugby, considered by many to be the form flanker in the competition before a jaw injury ended his season prematurely.
Also confirmed by the team in recent days is former LSU inside back Bobby Johns and Fijian playmaker Peceli Rinakama. They join high profile Canadian international signings Hubert Buydens and Eric Howard on a roster slowly beginning to take shape. Other players already confirmed in the team are Derrek van Klein, Cam Falcon, Alex Czajkowski, Conor Bertrand, and Moni Tonga’uiha.
Austin Elite have confirmed two players in the past week. Huns fullback Zinzan Elan-Puttick is joined by powerful ASU center Sione Fangaiuiha which now makes it three officially confirmed players along with Eagles hooker Peter Malcolm. Among several Huns set to join them in the MLR side are Mason Pedersen, Hanco Germishuys, and Michael Reid.
With roughly six months to go until the inaugural season begins confirmations across the league are expected to continue regularly in the coming weeks.