Coventry Rugby sign international pair

Daniel-2

Coventry Rugby boss Rowland Winter has added Tongan back five forward Daniel Faleafa and Canadian midfielder Rob Povey to his Greene King IPA Championship squad.

In addition, the blue-and-whites have announced that full back/fly half Dan Lewis and former Northampton lock Alex Woolford have joined the club ahead of this Saturday’s visit from unbeaten London Irish (3pm kick off).

The most recent of Faleafa’s 17 caps came against Fiji in June, when he made a try-scoring contribution to his country’s 27-19 win in Suva.

The Auckland-born 29-year-old was part of New Zealand’s 2009 Junior World Championship-winning squad, where he played alongside Aaron Cruden.

He played club rugby for Auckland, Northlands and Southern Districts before spending a season in Australia with Randwick. His last four seasons have been spent in France, in the colours of Albi then Colomiers.

Povey, 21, was born in Northampton and attended Rugby School and Oxford Brookes University.

He started his senior rugby career at Bedford Athletic and, qualifying for Canada through his mother, enjoyed a meteoric rise through his country’s under-20 and A teams before winning his first full cap against Chile last year.

Although his four international appearances have been at fly-half, Povey is equally at home at full-back, where Winter seems him playing a role for Cov.

Former Bedford Blue Lewis, who is also 21, made 29 National One appearances for Cambridge on a dual-registration basis over the last two seasons. He also played in New Zealand for North Otago.

Woolford arrives in Coventry with the experience of over 50 Championship matches under his belt from spells with London Scottish and London Welsh. The 25-year-old lock began his career with Saints academy.

Winter has also confirmed that winger Tim Bitirim has been released from his contract and will concentrate on his university studies at Loughborough.

Rowland Winter said:

“Dan’s pedigree as an international rugby player speaks for itself – he’s a very exciting addition to our squad.

“He brings plenty of size, experience and physicality into our pack in a position where we’ve been hit with injuries.

“He likes to get his hands on the ball, and also has strong setpiece skills which are well-suited to the English Championship. At 29 he’s in the prime of his career, and comes highly recommended.

“I’ve known Robbie for ten years; he’s an exciting young talent who came through the Northampton system and has really developed in the last couple of years to earn his international caps.

“Dan is a player we have been aware of for a year or so – he’s a talented, creative back who did well against us for Cambridge last year. He’s since had some good development time in New Zealand and hopefully will benefit from working with Nick Walshe.

“Alex is an experienced second row who will be a useful addition to the squad given that we are currently without Nile Dacres and George Oram. His lineout skills are a real strength, and his experience in the Championship and A League will be very valuable.”

 

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