Newcastle Falcons have strengthened their options at scrum half with the addition of Tongan number nine Sonatane Takulua to the squad with immediate effect.
The 24 year old has agreed terms that will see him join the Falcons roster for the remainder of the season and for the duration of the 2015/16 campaign.
A full international since 2014 with five caps to his name from tests against Fiji, Georgia, Samoa, Scotland and the USA, Takulua has also featured for the Tongan sevens team and arrives in the North East having spent the last two season playing for Northland in the ITM Cup.
Scoring 35 points in 25 appearances for the club, the Lapaha born player enjoyed an impressive 2014, forming a key part of the Northland team that finished third in the 2014 tournament and also earning a place in the Auckland based Blues Super 15 club development squad.
Relishing the challenge of playing in the Aviva Premiership, Takulua said: "I would like to thank the Newcastle Falcons for the opportunity to extend my playing experience in the UK. I am looking forward to learning and sharing skills and knowledge and I can't wait to get on the field.”
“My dream of playing full time rugby is finally coming true. It's been a lot of hard work and sacrifice but I’m delighted to be at Newcastle."
Falcons Director of Rugby Dean Richards said: “Tane is a good quality player who has been making steady progress over in New Zealand through playing in the ITM Cup and being part of the Blues set up in their development squad last year.”
“I’m sure he will continue in that vein here at Kingston Park and make a valuable contribution to the club over the course of this season and next.”
“He has a good turn of pace and good strength and he will complement our existing scrum half options well giving the coaches another option in a key position.”