The Crusaders have confirmed that they have signed All Blacks midfielder Seta Tamanivalu for next season.
Tamanivalu launched his Super Rugby career with the Chiefs in 2015 but will move south to play his third Super Rugby season with the Christchurch-based side.
Born in Fiji and formerly an U18 Fiji Rugby League representative, Tamanivalu burst onto the New Zealand rugby scene in 2012 when he was selected in the Taranaki national provincial team.
In 2013 he was named Taranaki’s most promising player of the year, and in 2014 he was recognised as New Zealand’s Player of the Year in the national provincial competition.
His obvious talent and superb form earned him call-up to the All Blacks squad this year for the three-Test series against Wales, getting his debut off the bench in the first game.
Crusaders head coach Scott Robertson says Tamanivalu is an incredibly exciting signing for the team.
“Seta is such an impressive player, and will add some real power and strength to our backline in 2017,” he told the Crusaders’ official website.
“He is exactly the sort of player we have been looking for to complement our squad, so we couldn’t be more excited to have him on board.”
Tamanivalu, currently in Argentina with the All Blacks squad, said the offer to play for the Crusaders next year was an opportunity he did not want to miss.
“I am grateful for my time at the Chiefs and everything I have learned there, but this is a fantastic opportunity for me to develop in a different environment,” he explained.
“I have long respected the Crusaders as a highly driven and successful team, so I am excited to be a part of that next year.”