Auva'a bolsters Sale's back-row
September 29, 2011
Auva'a will provide valuable cover across the back-row © Getty Images
Sale Sharks have bolstered their back-row resources with the signing of Onosa'i Auva'a on a short-term deal.
The 26-year-old flanker joins the Aviva Premiership side from Super Rugby side the Blues until February. With England international Hendre Fourie ruled out until the New Year after undergoing shoulder surgery, Auva'a will provide valuable cover in the back-row. And he is confident in the loose having played for the New Zealand Sevens team in the 2006 Commonwealth Games.
Sale's head coach Tony Hanks is looking forward to the flanker hitting the right notes both on and off the field. "He was a player whom I met when he was about 13 and he's always been a good player," Hanks said. "He's come through the Auckland system like Sammy Tuitupou and Tasesa Lavea, so he knows those guys and will be familiar with them.
"He's got a big engine and has played for younger New Zealand teams. He's played a lot of Super Rugby games in an Auckland side where he has been competing with very good All Blacks throughout his career. He comes from good stock. He's a leader and a very intelligent player, and his sister is a well known singer in New Zealand. I think he's talented musically off the field, too.
"We're confident he can fit straight in. When you are bringing someone in the middle of a season, you are looking for someone who can slot in seamlessly and that's what Onosa'i will be able to do.
"It's good timing for him, too, as he's had a few niggles over the past couple of years, so he hasn't had the consistent game time that he would have liked. It's nice fit for him as much as us, as we're going to get someone who is really motivated.
"This is not someone who is ending their career, this is someone who is looking at a new opportunity and who is really motivated to do well."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
The latest Week in Pictures brings you a selection of the best snaps from around the rugby world with scantily clad ladies, O'Driscoll and snow all featuring
"If I miss the first kick of the match, it shouldn't have any impact on the second. They are different entities." Tom Hamilton talks to Northampton Saints' Stephen Myler
It's time for those running Welsh rugby to stop trying to prevent its players heading to France and to start planning a future without them, writes Martin Williamson
Paul Eddison explains how the French sold English clubs down the river and why their domestic game will go from strength to strength