Patrick Kaufusi set to join Storm
North Queensland Cowboys prop Patrick Kaufusi is set to join the Melbourne Storm in 2018.
Storm coach Craig Bellamy announced the signing news at a press conference on Friday morning. Kaufusi will join older brothers Felise and Antonio to play for the Melbourne Storm.
"Felise's younger brother has agreed to terms to come down here next year," Bellamy said.
"Basically we've had the three of them – Antonio was here when I first started.
"Felise has been wonderful for us this year – hopefully Patrick can have the same impact."
Felise has enjoyed a breakout year in 2017, playing in 23 games and regularly playing 80 minutes in the second-row. The oldest of the brothers, Antonio, played for Australia, Tonga and Queensland as well as 78 games for the Storm.
Auckland-born, Queensland-raised Patrick has played 22 games for the Cowboys and has played two Tests for Tonga after making his NRL debut in 2015. He has also featured in junior representative football, turning out for Queensland under-20s.
The prop was ruled out for the 2017 season after injuring his foot playing for Tonga against Fiji. He's since undergone surgery.
Bellamy said Kaufusi would help fill the gap with North Queensland-bound Jordan McLean and Tohu Harris (Warriors) who leave the club next year.
"[Patrick] and Jordan are swapping clubs and he is going to be a real big loss.
"Certainly Tohu – he hasn’t played much footy this year with injuries but gee, the games he has played he's had a real impact. He's a real footy player. He doesn’t rely solely or a whole heap on his physical attributes.
"He's a smart footy player and knows how to get around the ground."