Aviva Premiership
Leicester swoop for Mafi
August 31, 2010
The Waratahs' Steve Mafi in training, Waratahs training session, Super 14, Moore Park, Sydney, Australia, November 27, 2008
Steve Mafi in action during a training session with former side the Waratahs © Getty Images
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Leicester Tigers have addressed their lack of second-row options by signing Tongan international Steve Mafi from the Waratahs.

The English champions were left short following the loss of Richard Blaze (foot) and Geoff Parling (neck) to injuries and, with the new Aviva Premiership season set to get underway this weekend, head coach Richard Cockerill is thrilled that he has been able to land the promising Mafi on such short notice.

"It is very close to the start of the season and I'm delighted that we've been able to bring in Steve," he said. "He has come through the ranks within Australian club rugby and has been very highly regarded there. He's a big, strong guy, he's young and ambitious, and we're looking forward to seeing how he settles into his rugby here."

Louis Deacon is unlikely to be available for the Tigers' opener against Northampton at Franklin's Gardens on Sunday because of his on-going back problems.

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