Exciting fullback Glen Fisiiahi has marked his return to the Vodafone Warriors’ NRL side by committing to a four-year contract keeping him at Mount Smart Stadium until the end of the 2015 season.
And in a double signing announcement the Vodafone Warriors have also confirmed they’ve not only taken up a one-year option on highly-respected veteran prop Sam Rapira but are also in discussions to extend his contract beyond 2012.
While at vastly different stages of their careers, Warriors recruitment manager Dean Bell said Fisiiahi and Rapira are both key players in the club’s future plans.
“We see Glen having a long future with the club and we’re delighted to sign him for four years,” he said.
“Sam has proven himself as one of the best props in the game and he’s also important to us as one of our most experienced players as well as being a key member of our senior leadership group.”
After starring for the Junior Warriors in their NYC premiership-winning campaign last year, the 20-year-old Fisiiahi was impressive throughout the Vodafone Warriors’ NRL trials program last month. His form led to his NRL debut in the season-opening clash against Parramatta at Eden Park on March 12 but concussion and a shoulder injury sidelined him the following week.
He appeared for the Auckland Vulcans last weekend and was yesterday named to start at fullback in a much-changed Warriors side to face Cronulla in Sunday’s fourth-round NRL encounter at Owen Delany Park in Taupo.
“It’s an exciting week for me having my future sorted out and also coming back into the NRL side to start at fullback this week,” said Fisiiahi.
“I’ve had an amazing couple of years at the Vodafone Warriors playing with the NYC side and now playing in the NRL. I couldn’t be happier and now I want to do all I can to improve all areas of my game and give myself a chance of playing in the NRL as much as possible.”
Fisiiahi, a Wesley College product, comes from a well-known rugby league family. His older twin brothers Paul and David, both try-scoring specialists, have been fixtures on the Auckland club scene as well as representing Tonga.
Glen Fisiiahi finished his NYC career with 22 tries in 29 appearances and grabbed five tries in the NRL trials last month including doubles against Newcastle and Parramatta.
Rapira doesn’t turn 24 until next month but has already played 105 NRL matches and 12 Tests for the Kiwis, including the 2008 World Cup final. He has told the club he wants to stay at Mount Smart Stadium and is in discussions about his future plans.