Malakai Fekitoa: Munster snap up former All Blacks centre from Wasps

Lawrence Nolan

Munster have moved to fill the gap likely to be left by the departure of Damian de Allende by signing New Zealand and Tonga international Malakai Fekitoa.

A World Cup winner with the All Blacks in 2015, the 29-year-old can play in either centre position and has signed a two-year contract in Limerick.

Glittering career

Born and raised in Ha’apai, Tonga, Fekitoa moved to Auckland as a teenager after earning a scholarship at Wesley College thanks to his performances for the Tonga Sevens age-grade sides.

He made his All Blacks debut against England as a 22-year-old in 2014 and helped the Highlanders to their first-ever Super Rugby title the following year.

He then featured in New Zealand’s successful 2015 Rugby World Cup campaign and scored eight tries in 24 appearances for the All Blacks between 2014 and 2017, before departing first to Toulon, where was part of the side defeated by Munster in a memorable 2018 Champions Cup quarter-final at Thomond Park, and later to Wasps.

On the international front, he now represents his native Tonga after the World Rugby rule change regarding internationals of dual nationality late last year.