Goneva swaps Leicester for Newcastle

Date published: March 22 2016

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Newcastle Falcons have added world-class finishing power to their ranks for next season with the signing of Leicester Tigers utility back Vereniki Goneva.

Capped 39 times by Fiji and able to play at both wing and centre, Goneva’s mixture of pace and power have made him one of the Premiership’s most feared attackers during his four seasons with Leicester.

During that time he has crossed for 26 league tries in 58 league appearances, adding a further six tries in his 20 European Champions Cup outings.

A Premiership title winner during his first season with Leicester, Goneva scored in both the semi-final and final as the Tigers clinched the 2012-13 crown.

The following year saw Goneva top the division’s try-scoring chart with 12 touchdowns in 18 games, the Fijian international shortlisted for Premiership Player of the Year as well as being named in the official Dream Team for the season.

Adding a further nine tries over the past two campaigns, Goneva was part of Fiji’s Rugby World Cup squad last year, making four starts in the tournament and scoring against Wales.

Delighted to have secured the services of the 31-year-old, Newcastle Falcons director of rugby Dean Richards said: “We are getting not only a world-class player with Vereniki, but also somebody who has consistently proven they can thrive in the Aviva Premiership.

“He will bring another dimension to our back-line firepower from next season onwards, and it says much for the current standing of the Falcons that we can attract a player of his calibre.

“I am sure our supporters will enjoy the style and cutting edge that he brings to our play, and this is the sort of acquisition which really makes a statement about the ambition of everybody at Kingston Park.”

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