Panthers stop-off a blessing amid tragic stillbirth

4 weeks ago 12
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Mid-season Penrith recruit Tevita Pangai Junior says he's "thankful" for the timing of his arrival at the Panthers, revealing the new venture has been "a good distraction" following his partner's tragic stillbirth.

Pangai Junior took leave from the Panthers during August after receiving the news at training that his partner had had a stillbirth 24 weeks into her pregnancy, losing their daughter.

After being told by the Broncos he was unwanted and signing a three-year deal with the Bulldogs from 2022, Pangai Junior in July secured a short-term contract with the Panthers spanning the rest of this season.

Panthers recruit Tevita Pangai Junior. (Getty)

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"Losing my daughter six weeks ago – this has been a good distraction for me," Pangai Junior said on Sydney's Nine News.

"I'm just really thankful for the club. I could have had the season off, but it was best that I came back and joined a team. It's been good for me and my wife."

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While Pangai Junior has played six games since arriving at the Panthers, the barnstorming forward won't feature in the grand final after suffering a knee injury in Penrith's 10-6 preliminary final win over Melbourne.

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