The Mooloos’ capture of the 25-year-old lock/loose forward was announced by the Waikato Rugby Union on Tuesday, and the move is believed to be a family-oriented one.
“He has a partner working and living in Hamilton and I’m sure that was a significant driver in his decision,” Waikato head coach Andrew Strawbridge said.
“Taleni is a very talented player and his ability to play a number of positions to a high standard will provide us with some choices.”
“He is a hardworking man and is always looking to grow his game. His desire to contribute within the team environment and to the broader community marks him as a special bloke.”
Injuries have stalled Seu’s career progress and prevented him from adding to his appearance tally for both Auckland and the Chiefs, but a permanent move to Hamilton will bring a new opportunity to push for higher honours.
Seu – who played more than 20 times for Auckland since debuting for the province in 2015 and has amassed over 40 caps for the Chiefs since his Super Rugby debut a year later – is the second high-profile player to commit themselves to Waikato in recent weeks after young Crusaders wing Sevu Reece re-signed for the 2019 campaign.
After securing promotion into the Mitre 10 Cup Premiership with their Championship title success last year, Seu will get the chance to face his old side when Waikato face Auckland in Hamilton on August 31.
Seu will not be involved in any rugby this week as the Chiefs have the first of their two byes, and will next be in line for selection when his side hosts the Blues on April 13.
In other news:
Sign up to our mailing list here and we’ll keep you up to the minute with weekly updates from the world of rugby.