Planet Rugby

Leota loving life with Sharks

14th January 2014 11:20

Share:

Johnny Leota of Sale Sharks celebrates with Sam Tuitupou

Duo: Johnny Leota and Sam Tuitupou

Samoan centre Johnny Leota is excited about the challenges to come after penning a new deal with Sale Sharks in December.

The powerful midfielder arrived at the Premiership club after the 2011 World Cup, and claims he feels very much at home, forming a physical centre pairing with ex-All Black Sam Tuitupou.

"I'm definitely delighted to be staying on at Sale for another two years," Leota told the Manchester Evening News.

"I've settled down well here in Manchester and my family enjoys living here too, which was also an important consideration, and there's a really good bunch of boys here at the club.

"We feel as though we're original Mancs now so we're definitely at home here.

"It was important that the family were happy too and my daughter is so happy at her school. She wakes up early because she is so excited about going to school, so you can't ask for more than that.

"Even the weather - I don't find it too bad.

"When we first came here a couple of years ago, we expected it to be worse but it's been fine and in fact when we have had some winter snow we've enjoyed it because that's something you really don't see back home in New Zealand.

"I'm really enjoying my rugby here. The forwards have been doing an awesome job this season by getting us go-forward ball, which has made it so much easier for all of us in the backs.

"And I've always said playing alongside Sam is a huge honour for me. I watched him when I was younger and he was always a guy I really looked up to, so to play alongside him and see how many players he destroys, I'm glad I'm on his side!"

29-year-old Leota remains confident his side can continue to impress in the Challenge Cup; the Sharks fly out to tackle Biarritz in their final group game this weekend, four points to the good over their Basque rivals.

"I think last year we were under huge pressure every week but we performed and I guess it's the same with this competition," added Leota.

"We definitely want to finish the group on a high and if we can get into the quarter-finals who knows?

"As a professional that's why you play rugby, to be involved in big knockout games."

  • Aviva Prem Fixtures
Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , April 19
Exeter vs SaleExeter vs Sale Preview
Bath vs WorcesterBath vs Worcester Preview
Wasps vs GloucesterWasps vs Gloucester Preview
Sunday , April 20
Northampton vs London IrishNorthampton vs London Irish Preview
Newcastle vs SaracensNewcastle vs Saracens Preview
Saturday , May 3
Saracens vs Worcester15:00
Bath vs Northampton15:00
Wasps vs Newcastle15:00
Exeter vs Harlequins15:00
Sale vs Leicester15:00
More Aviva Premiership fixtures
  • Aviva Prem Results
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Friday , April 18
Harlequins 24 - 20 LeicesterHarlequins vs Leicester Report
Sunday , April 13
Saracens 28 - 24 NorthamptonSaracens vs Northampton Report
London Irish 40 - 12 NewcastleLondon Irish vs Newcastle Report
Saturday , April 12
Leicester 27 - 15 WaspsLeicester vs Wasps Report
Worcester 33 - 38 ExeterWorcester vs Exeter Report
Gloucester 17 - 18 BathGloucester vs Bath Report
Friday , April 11
Sale Sharks 12 - 27 HarlequinsSale Sharks vs Harlequins Report
Sunday , March 30
Newcastle 12 - 17 Worcester
Saturday , March 29
Exeter 13 - 14 Gloucester
Harlequins 23 - 9 London Irish
More Aviva Premiership results
  • Aviva Prem Table
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Saracens1976
2Northampton1966
3Leicester Tigers2064
4Bath1959
5Harlequins2058