This comes after Leali’ifano led the Brumbies to the Australian Conference in Super Rugby, and a quarter-final berth against the Sharks next week.
The fly-half will join the Top League ahead of the 2020 season, which would end his international career (as he has under 60 caps), which many fans want to see revived after a stellar season with the Canberra-based outfit.
However, it is Lealiifano’s story which is why he has garnered so much respect from the rugby world. Having been diagnosed with leukemia in 2016, the 31-year-old made his comeback the following year during a short stint with Irish province Ulster.
He quickly became a fan-favourite in Ulster, as he has always been at the Brumbies over the past 12 years.
In light of his incredible story, one fan described him as a “classy brave true warrior of a man”, after a career that has been defined by what has happened off the pitch as much as on it.
His scintillating form on the pitch this season has led to many fans wanting a recall to the Wallabies for the 19-cap international. The last of his caps came in 2016 against England, but his form this season certainly warrants a recall from Michael Cheika, with many believing his form is currently better than that of his competitors for a gold jersey, Bernard Foley and Quade Cooper.
This is what the fans have said about Leali’ifano’s career and form:
Thank you Christian Lealiifano True brumbies legend going to be tough to replace such a classy brave true warrior of a man thank you for all the great times and memories over the many years
— brian brothwell (@brian_elix26) June 17, 2019
A massive team man and deserves all the praise he has received especially with what he has had to overcome. All the best Christian in 2020! ? they can bring the title home this year. https://t.co/Ln3a5E9UR0
— Nadine (@nlm78) June 16, 2019
— Jeremy Thompson (@jthommo101) June 17, 2019
The guy was a class act on and off the pitch in his short stint at Ulster so I can only imagine his influence in the Brumbies dressing room while his class on the pitch has been abundantly clear this season. Probably sold Ulster to Sam Carter as well so still doing us good turns. https://t.co/Z8Rk4nJisD
— Colin McBride (@colin_a_mcbride) June 16, 2019
Would love to see him at 10 for Wallabies at RWC
— phil peake (@pkfjpeake) June 16, 2019
What kind of world sees Samu, Christian and Rory leaving the country and we blithely talk about Foley, Quade and Skelton as the backbone of the wallabies World Cup campaign. Craziness
— Tony Warren (@TonyWarren1) June 16, 2019
With the Rugby Championship before the World Cup, Cheika has the perfect opportunity to give Leali’ifano another chance for his nation before the World Cup.
For now, the fly-half still has a job to do with the Brumbies, and will hope to extend his time with the club beyond this weekend’s quarter-final.
Regardless, after the career he has had, he will bow out a legend.
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