Cape Town - Japan’s Rugby World Cup star Male Sa’u will join the Blues in Super Rugby this season.
According to the allblacks.com website
, the Auckland-born utility back, has signed a one year contract to play for the Blues.
28-year-old former Counties Manukau player is a replacement for Dan
Bowden, who has been granted an early release by mutual consent to
pursue rugby opportunities overseas.
The signing follows the
recent announcement of former All Black and Super Rugby centurion
Tanerau Latimer, who like Sa’u is joining the Blues from Japan.
a former age-group national representative, moved to Japan in 2008
where he has played for Yamaha Jubilo. Last year Sa’u played for the
Melbourne Rebels during the Super Rugby Championship.
played 26 times for Japan under Eddie Jones since his selection in 2013
including a key role in the outstanding performances by Japan at the
recent World Cup.
“We are thrilled to have Male join us. He
is a strong runner to the line and is now an experienced player at
international level,” said Blues head coach Tana Umaga.
showed at the World Cup that he is a strong and combative player. He can
also play in a number of positions in the backline which is invaluable.
“We have a very young team and Male will add experience as well as undoubted ability.”
said he was looking forward to the opportunity and being able to spend
time in his home city of Auckland with family and friends.
have always admired the way the Blues have played and now also the
chance to play under Tana and the other Blues coaching staff which I
believe will help me with my rugby going forward,” said Sau.
left Counties Manukau before Tana arrived, but I’ve spoken to some of
the guys who have been under him, and they said Tana helped them a lot
with their rugby development.
“I am going to give it 100 percent, just hard work. I like the attacking style of the Blues. There
will be heaps of new faces there but they can give you that excitement
in playing a new style of rugby.”
He is expected to join the Blues next month.