Rovers sign fourth Australian player for 2015

Reni Maitua has made 174 NRL appearances with Canterbury Bulldogs, Cronulla Sharks and Parramatta Eels.
Reni Maitua has made 174 NRL appearances with Canterbury Bulldogs, Cronulla Sharks and Parramatta Eels.
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Featherstone Rovers have made their fourth Australian signing for 2015.

Rovers coach Andy Hay has described the capture of 32-year-old Australian utility forward Reni Maitua on a two-year deal as a “massive signing” for the club.

Subject to visa clearance, Maitua will join fellow Aussies Jy Hitchcox, Sam Irwin and Ryan Verlinden at Big Fellas Stadium next season.

Maitua has made 174 NRL appearances with Canterbury Bulldogs, Cronulla Sharks and Parramatta Eels.

He has three caps for Samoa, for whom he played in the 2013 World Cup.

Hay said: “This is a massive signing for Featherstone Rovers and a statement of intent by the club.

“His playing record speaks for itself and he brings a wealth of experience to our dressing room. He is a uncompromising leader both on and off the field and will be big asset. We’ve done our homework and talked to people who have been working with him recently and he was highly rated.

“I’ve spoken to Reni and he is really eager to join Featherstone and help us achieve our ambitions of bringing top flight rugby league to the town. He has made it clear that he does not see this as a holiday but he wants to prove himself in the UK with Featherstone Rovers. He is excited about the new structures in place in our competition and wants to play Super League with Rovers.

“He will not only be an asset on the field but he will be helping to promote the club and lift the profile of Featherstone Rovers.”

Maitua started his career at Canterbury Bulldogs where he appeared from the bench in the 2004 NRL Grand Final victory against Sydney Roosters and played against Leeds Rhinos in 2005 in the World Club Challenge.

He made 100 appearances for the Bulldogs scoring 23 tries before signing for Cronulla in 2009 where he made eight appearances. He then made 53 appearances for Parramatta Eels before returning to Canterbury Bulldogs last season making 13 appearances, scoring one try.