Aviva Premiership
Tu'ifua bolsters Falcons' pack
ESPNscrum Staff
August 4, 2011
Samoa's Taiasina Tu'ifua celebrates their win over Australia, Australia v Samoa, ANZ Stadium, Sydney, Australia, July 17, 2011
Tu'ifua becomes the Falcons 14th close season signing © Getty Images

The Newcastle Falcons have bolstered their pack ahead of the 2011-12 Premiership season with the signing of Samoan back-row Taiasina Tu'ifua.

The 26-year-old flanker was instrumental in Samoa's historic 32-23 win over Austraila last month and standing at 6"6 will certainly bring a physical presence to the Falcons pack. Having only made his Test debut two months ago against Japan - Tu'ifua's rise has been rapid and Newcastle coach Alan Tait acted quickly to secure his man.

"I'm absolutely ecstatic that he has decided to sign for us. We have been holding out to find this sort of player and we have finally got our man," said Tait. "He's a big man, a good ball carrier and will give us so many dimensions to our set-up.

"He was a big part of the Samoan team which conquered Australia a fortnight ago and I am delighted that we held out for him."

Tu'ifua - who will be joined on Tyneside by fellow Samoan Jamie Helleur- is delighted to be able to ply his trade in the Premiership and becomes the Falcons 14th close-season signing in the process.

"I am delighted to sign for the Newcastle Falcons," Tu'ifua said. "The Falcons are an ambitious club and I am looking forward to pulling on the Falcons jersey."

And with the Premiership season just under a month away, Tait has expressed his desire to bring another new face to Kingston Park. The Falcons have been linked with Wallabies centre Ryan Cross and South African Corne Uys and Tait hopes to land his man sooner rather than later.

"Everyone knows we are after a big centre but he has to be the right type of player," Tait said. "We are again holding out for that player and hopefully we will get something tied up before the season starts."

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

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