Vainikolo makes shock move
January 4, 2012
Lesley Vainikolo played five internationals for England © Getty Images
Former England wing Lesley Vainikolo has left Gloucester to join French second division club La Rochelle with immediate effect.
Vainikolo scored 36 tries in 87 games for the Cherry and Whites following his switch from rugby league side Bradford Bulls in 2007 and represented England five times.
La Rochelle coach Fabrice Ribeyrolles said: "Lesley is the profile we are looking for. We have been thinking about strengthening our three-quarter line with a 'puncher' but we did not want to rush.
"Lesley brings many features, he has an impressive ability both offensively and defensively, he is very physically fit and able to join us immediately. He showed a real desire to come and play at La Rochelle."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
"Some people have it from day one and Brian did." Tom Hamilton talks to the two players who made their Ireland debuts alongside Brian O'Driscoll back in June 1999
Despite having lost all four of their 2014 Six Nations games, the future of Italian rugby is bright with the team showing a new youthful core, argues Enrico Borra
"The loudest cheer at a rugby game, away from social media gimmicks, pumping music and pyrotechnics will always be for a try." Tom Hamilton on the Twickenham atmosphere
"The only thing that will stop this England team from becoming a great team is themselves. They need to ask themselves 'what can we be?'" The Phil Vickery column