Fainga'a excited by Brumbies challenge
Brumbies utility back Anthony Fainga’a is thrilled to be
back in Canberra and ready to put his extensive experience into practice with
his new side.
Fainga’a returns to the Brumbies after finishing up with the
Kintetsu Liners in the Japanese Top League, the centre’s first season in Japan.
It was a baptism of fire for the 30-year old, the Liners
finishing 13th with only three wins from their 15 games in the competition.
Despite the tough season the former Reds man said
his time in Japan was invaluable.
“Japan is a country where the guys have just worked super
hard,” Fainga’a told the Brumbies' official website.
“They’re probably not the most talented rugby players in the
world but they make up for it with their work ethic, it’s huge.
“For me to get over there and start playing with the
Japanese has been fantastic, it’s helped my rugby and helped me learn a new
“Not only that but it’s helped me to grow the base of what I
thought was hard work, they’ve just taken it to a new level.”
Fainga’a hopes this new work ethic will help propel him back
to top form in the Super Rugby competition following a number of injury riddled
seasons with the Reds.
The utility back arrived in Canberra late last week,
returning to the area where he was born, grew up and begun his rugby career.
Fainga’a said being back home had been everything he’d hoped
“To be back home has been amazing,” he added.
“I arrived Friday and I’ve had family dinners every single
night so it’s been really, really good. I’m really happy to be back and to join
the team today has been fantastic and to be around so many familiar faces, it’s
“For me it’s really been a great homecoming, walking the
streets and going through Civic and Manuka and seeing all the old shops you
used to go to as well as all the people you used to see, it’s been fantastic.”
Fainga’a said he feels a deep connection with Canberra and
counted himself very lucky to be back playing rugby where it all began for him
and his twin brother Saia.
“This is my home," he added.
"I’ve been here for a very long time.”
“When I started here in 2004 with the Brumbies I always
wanted to start and finish my career here.
“I’ve been lucky enough to be given the opportunity to come
back by Stephen (Larkham) to come back and play for the Brumbies and to do that
with Saia was a bonus.
“It was a big opportunity for me, I just want to make sure I
can add to the team and put in good performances.”