Wasps sign former All Black Vaea Fifita

Date published: June 30 2021 - Colin Newboult

Wasps have announced the signing of All Black lock and flanker Vaea Fifita, who will join the club for next season.

The 29-year-old has 11 caps for New Zealand, after making an eye-catching debut against Samoa in 2017.

A player with immense speed for his size, Fifita will be invaluable at the lineout for Wasps, with his impressive athleticism seeing him make the most lineout steals (22) of any New Zealand player in Super Rugby since the beginning of 2016.

Like current Wasp and former All Black Malakai Fekitoa, Fifita was born in raised in Tonga, before moving to New Zealand for school.

Title winner

Fifita won the Super Rugby title alongside current Wasps, Brad Shields and Jeff Toomaga-Allen, with the Hurricanes in 2016.

The 6ft 5in forward has played over 50 games for the ‘Canes, while also appearing for the Wellington Lions with his soon-to-be teammates again.

In June 2017, Fifita started at blindside flanker for the Hurricanes against the British and Irish Lions and scored a crucial try with 10 minutes left to help the Wellington side draw 31-31.

Wasps head coach Lee Blackett said: “We have been looking for a quality lock and back-rower and Vaea fits the bill perfectly. We are therefore delighted to be able to bring an experienced international forward like him on board for next season.

“We are all excited to work with him and the strong group of forwards we have at the club for next season.”

Fifita added: “I am proud to be joining one of the most historic rugby clubs in the world.

“I can’t wait to get started on what promises to be a very exciting journey with Wasps. I will be working hard to help the team achieve as much success as possible.

“My family and I look forward to experiencing everything that England has to offer.”