Tuesday, 22 December 2015

Leinster Lose Te'o to Worcester

Worcester have signed the New Zealand-born centre Ben Te’o from Leinster for next season. The 28-year-old, who qualifies to play for England, left the South Sydney Rabbitohs rugby league team in June 2014 and has now agreed a lucrative move to the Premiership.

Worcester are understood to have fought off strong competition for Te’o, a statement of intent as they continue their battle for top-flight stability.

In rugby league Te’o enjoyed a fine career with the Australian sides Wests Tigers, Brisbane Broncos and the Rabbitohs – the latter with whom he won the National Rugby League title alongside Sam Burgess.

Auckland-born Te’o represented Samoa in the 2008 Rugby League World Cup, scoring twice in his sole appearance against France, while he also featured seven times for Queensland in the Australian State of Origin series.

“Ben is a really exciting talent and has proved he is more than capable of transferring his skills from league to union,” the Worcester director of rugby, Dean Ryan, said. “His experience and power in the centre will add further depth to our midfield and we’re looking forward to him joining up with the side.”

Te’o said: “Worcester are in a very similar stage in their playing and cultural development that I found when I first joined the Rabbitohs. I look forward to making a similar contribution at Sixways.

“The investment in facilities and infrastructure is impressive and after speaking with Dean Ryan, it is clearly a club which is on the up. Everything is in place for Worcester to become a successful club competing in the top tier.”

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