Saints sign Wallabies wing from Waratahs

Alan Gaffney (picture: Kirsty Edmonds)
Alan Gaffney (picture: Kirsty Edmonds)

Saints have announced the signing of giant winger Taqele Naiyaravoro from the NSW Waratahs.

The 26-year-old Fijian-born Australia international will join the club for the 2018/19 season and beyond.

Weighing in at 125kg, Naiyaravoro has already made an impact in the northern hemisphere as he scored nine tries in 22 appearances for Glasgow Warriors during the 2015/16 season.

And while he will not arrive at Franklin’s Gardens until later this year, Naiyaravoro is already relishing the thought of a new challenge in the Aviva Premiership.

“I’m thrilled to be able to return to the UK and join a massive club in Northampton Saints,” he said.

“The squad is already filled with talent and I can’t wait to arrive and try to develop further as a player.

“The club is heading in a really exciting direction with the likes of Chris Boyd and Dan Biggar arriving next year, and I hope I can be a part of a push for more silverware at Franklin’s Gardens.”

Naiyaravoro made his Australia debut back in 2015 against the USA in Chicago, replacing his then team-mate at the Waratahs, Rob Horne, who he will now join at Franklin’s Gardens.

He will also be well known to new Saints team-mates Dylan Hartley, Courtney Lawes, Teimana Harrison and Paul Hill, who were all involved when Naiyaravoro scored for the Wallabies against England during their 2016 summer tour Down Under.

And having witnessed Naiyaravoro’s talents in Super Rugby, Saints technical coaching consultant Alan Gaffney believes the player can make a big impact for the black, green and gold.

“Taqele Naiyaravoro is an immense talent and we feel that he can really fulfil his sizeable potential at Saints,” Gaffney said.

“He clearly boasts the physical attributes to cause teams a lot of problems in the Aviva Premiership and in Europe – and he showed that during his time with Glasgow.

“Taqele already has a relationship with Rob Horne having played with him at the Waratahs and I’m sure he will make a massive impact when he slots into the back-line next year.”