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Page last updated at 18:24 GMT, Tuesday, 23 October 2007 19:24 UK

Hape is mixing with the best

Not content with being one of the most gifted centres in world rugby, Bradford star Shontayne Hape is also a talented DJ.

The 26-year-old, who will line up for New Zealand against Great Britain in the first Test on Saturday, loves nothing more than getting behind the decks once he's finished his day's work.

Hape told BBC Sport about his passion for DJing, and his plans for life after rugby league.

Shontayne Hape
By Shontayne Hape
Bradford & New Zealand centre

DJing is something I've been doing as a hobby since I was 15 when one of my best friends from home started.

Bradford centre Shontayne Hape
Hape goes by the name of DJ Shape when he is behind the decks

I was fascinated with it straight away and used to hang out round his house all the time to learn what he was doing.

It was never going to be a full-time career - rugby league was always number one - but it's a great way to relax and forget about the game for a few hours.

I practise as much as I can after training or on days off. I just set the decks up and have some fun.

I use CD decks with a special feature, where there's a pad at the top which is like a record you can manipulate back and forth. That means you can scratch and do all the things you can do with vinyl - but without heaving around hundreds of records.

I've been meaning to set up some more gigs at some local clubs and pubs but it's so hard to fit it around games at the weekend. The matches sometimes switch days because of TV so it's difficult to plan too far in advance.

But me and Robbie Paul have been talking about it and we're going to sort something out, I promise!

I play R&B and hip-hop, but I veer more towards the more commercial side of things - 50 Cent and things like that.

Stuff that's more hardcore doesn't always go down as well with the sort of crowds I might be playing to. I just want to get people dancing - that's one of the things I enjoy most about DJing.

American rapper 50 Cent
American rapper 50 Cent is one of Hape's favourite artists

My team-mates love it - they are just hounding me for music all the time, they're a nightmare! They want me to update their ipods all the time and share all my music with them. It gets to the stage when I have to tell some of them I've given up DJing!

It's definitely something I'd like to take up more seriously when I retire from rugby league.

I've been thinking about trying to own a nightclub where I could DJ, or even doing some courses and getting into the production side of things, doing remixes and so on.

I would also be interested in running a shop selling DJ gear - turntables, mixers and so on. I want to stay involved in some shape or form.

While I'm still playing, rugby league will always be my priority - but when I hang up my boots, there are plenty of possibilities.

(Shontayne Hape was talking to Phil Harlow)

see also
Kiwi duo set to make Test debuts
24 Oct 07 |  Rugby League
New Zealand player profiles
23 Oct 07 |  Rugby League
Bradford duo join up with Kiwis
23 Sep 07 |  Rugby League
Hape suffers serious knee injury
27 Mar 07 |  Bradford

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