Jordan Rapana

NRL star Jordan Rapana poised to make switch to rugby union

The 11-test Kiwis winger, who plies his trade for the Canberra Raiders, is likely to join the Robbie Deans-coached Wild Knights, according to the Sun-Herald.

Coming off contract at the end of this season, the Raiders tabled an offer in an attempt to retain the services of the 30-year-old, but, due to salary cap restraints, the contract offer is paltry is comparison to what Rapana could earn while playing union outside of Australia.

Injury setback no issue for 'Air Jordan'

Rapana was forced to extend his overseas stay after fracturing his cheekbone in the Four Nations final loss to Australia in Liverpool. 

While the injury didn't require surgery, the Kiwis winger was not medically cleared to fly back home due to the heightened risks associated with air travel and increased pressure. 

Kata, Rapana to debut for Kiwis

The pair have been selected in the starting line-up by new head coach David Kidwell, in a 19-man team that includes seven changes from side that lost 16-0 to the Kangaroos in the Anzac Test in May.

Among those changes is the return of 17-test veteran Jared Waerea-Hargreaves, who last wore the Kiwis jersey at the 2013 World Cup.

Hooker Issac Luke - who is the most-capped player in the side - will play his 37th test for the Kiwis on Saturday after he missed the May Test due to poor form.