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Irish sign All Black Naholo

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Big spending London Irish sign All Black Waisake Naholo

London Irish have announced the signing of New Zealand winger Waisake Naholo. The 28-year-old Rugby World Cup winner, who has 26 caps, has also won a Super Rugby title and was part of the successful Baby Black World Rugby Under-20 Championship team.

He has regularly shown his finishing capability at all levels, crossing the whitewash 16 times at international level alone, with a further 41 coming in his 55 Super Rugby appearances for the Highlanders, a franchise record.

London Irish director of rugby Declan Kidney is looking forward to seeing Naholo in action for the Exiles later in the year once his New Zealand contractual commitments have been completed.

“Waisake is a top-class player who will bring great experience with him, which we hope he can pass onto our younger players as they continue their development with us,” he said.

“We are delighted that a player of his ability and age profile has bought into our vision for where we as a club are working hard to get to. We look forward to welcoming him to Hazelwood when he is finished with his commitments with the NZRU.”

“Following a great career with the All Blacks, Highlanders and Taranaki I am excited by the challenge of joining London Irish” Naholo expressed.

“London Irish is a team on the up and has an exciting future. There is plenty of ambition, a world-class training facility, a good group of coaches and players and some exciting signings coming in. The supporters have a great reputation as well and I’m looking forward to it.”

It was in February, fresh after officially confirming the signing of British and Irish Lions back row Sean O’Brien, that RugbyPass announced Naholo would be coming to London Irish.

We reported that Irish had beaten Wasps to the Highlander’s signature in what was the latest addition to a growing raft of big name international talent switching to the club.

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Big spending London Irish sign All Black Waisake Naholo