Northampton Saints has today announced the signing of Nafi Tuitavake into the club’s squad.
The Tongan international joins the Saints from Narbonne, where he has played for the past year since moving from his native New Zealand. A graduate of the same 2009 IRB Junior World Championships-winning All Blacks team as Ken Pisi, Aaron Cruden and Zac Guildford, Tuitavake was a regular for the Crusaders in Super Rugby for two years and North Harbour in the ITM Cup for close to a decade.
At 5ft 11in and 95kgs, the 27-year-old Tuitavake will add physical presence to the Saints backline, allied to pace and skill that saw him represent New Zealand Sevens in the World Rugby Sevens Series.
Director of rugby Jim Mallinder says that he is looking forward to seeing Tuitavake perform in black, green and gold.
“We have been really impressed with what we have seen of Nafi,” he said. “He has performed on lots of big stages from Super Rugby and New Zealand Sevens to international rugby and we think his ability and experience from these will further enhance our squad. He is an exciting talent who has all the attributes to be a success here and we look forward to welcoming him to Northampton.”
“I have really enjoyed my time at Narbonne, but the opportunity to join Northampton was one I could not resist,” Tuitavake commented. “They are a world-renowned club with some amazing players and I can’t wait to get started.
“I know Ace Tuala very well and Ken Pisi from our time at North Harbour and they have nothing but good things to say about Saints. I am very grateful to Narbonne president Bernard Archilla for allowing me to take this opportunity and look forward to meeting my new team mates.”