Ulster sign Fijian star Leone Nakarawa

Date published: January 27 2021 - Colin Newboult

Ulster have announced the signing of Fijian superstar Leone Nakarawa from fellow PRO14 side Glasgow Warriors for the 2021/22 season.

The 32-year old Olympic gold medal winner was crowned European Player of the Year in 2018 and will make the move to Kingspan Stadium from Glasgow Warriors on a one-year deal.

With an ability to play in both the second-row and back-row, Nakarawa is known for his devastating offloads, as well as being no stranger to the try-line.

Of the new signing, Dan McFarland, said: “It’s an exciting time for Leone to be making the move to Ulster for the upcoming season as we look to continue to build on our ambitions as a squad.

Broad skill set

“Given his broad skill set and experience, as well as some impressive accolades to his name, I’m confident that he’ll be a valuable addition to the team, and we look forward to welcoming Leone to the province.”

Ulster have also agreed new deals with hooker Rob Herring and fly-half Ian Madigan, who have both signed two-year extensions.

Herring, who continues to be a familiar presence in the Ireland set-up, has signed a contract that will keep him at Kingspan Stadium until at least June 2023.

The hooker said: “I’m delighted to sign a new contract with Ulster – there’s a great atmosphere at the club at the moment. We are all pretty close mates here, working hard to make memories and win silverware for the province. That’s definitely something I want to be a part of for as long as I can.”

Meanwhile, having already made his presence keenly felt since signing with Ulster last season, Madigan has put pen-to-paper on a new deal.

The fly-half, who has delivered some heart-stopping performances – most notably when his 80th minute long range penalty secured Ulster’s place in last season’s PRO14 final – will continue to bring a wealth of experience to the squad in the years ahead.

“I’m delighted to extend my contract with Ulster – it was an easy decision for me, and my partner Anna, as we have loved our time in Belfast so far,” he said.

“I’ve really enjoyed playing under the current coaching team, as well as working alongside some of the younger players in the squad as they break through into the senior team, which is very exciting for the club.

“I believe the team are good enough to win trophies in the near future, and that is my number one goal. I also can’t wait to experience a packed-out Kingspan Stadium and get the opportunity to meet the supporters in-person sometime soon.”