The Waratahs announced the return of world-class prop Sekope Kepu, who has decided to re-join the club for three seasons, which will keep him at the Allianz Stadium until the end of 2019.
Recently named in the Wallabies’ 39-man training squad for the upcoming England Test series, the re-signing is another huge coup for the Waratahs after several other key players – Taqele Naiyaravoro, Wycliff Palu, Jed Holloway and Andrew Kellaway – already announced their decision to stay in Sydney.
A product of the Randwick Rugby Club, Kepu is one of Australian rugby’s most valued and experienced forwards. He played for the Waratahs from 2008 to 2015 before heading to France to play for the UBB at the end of the season last year.
Born in Sydney he has already earned 96 Super Rugby caps, having played every single one of them for the Waratahs.
Despite being born in Sydney, Kepu grew up in New Zealand, where he was a representative at junior levels, and was part of the wider Chiefs squad between 2005 and 2007.
He has amassed 63 Wallaby caps after making his provincial and international debut back in 2008.
The Syndey hardman is renowned for his leadership qualities within the team and mobility around the park, and will add extra strength to the Waratahs’ front row.
A powerful ball-carrier, Kepu has continued to make a name for himself for both his attacking and defensive prowess.
NSW Waratahs head coach, Daryl Gibson believes Kepu’s return will be great for the team.
“I’m delighted that Keps is returning to Australia, and happy to welcome him back to the Waratahs,” Gibson said,” Gibson told the official Waratahs website.
“He will be a great addition to the squad and will strengthen our front row options.
“I’m sure he would have grown from the experience in France, where there is a real scrum culture.
It can only benefit our young props in Tom Robertson and Matt Sandell, as he helps them grow and pass on his knowledge.”
A true team and family man, Kepu is a core member of the Waratahs leadership group, and played a huge part in the Waratahs’ 2014 Championship winning year.
He has been a vital mainstay within the Waratahs and the Wallabies squads across the last few seasons, and is just the sixth prop in Australian rugby history to reach 50 Test caps.