Hull FC have announced the signing of NRL forward Ligi Sao on a two-year deal.
The Samoan international becomes the clubs seventh signing for 2020, he’s 26-years-old and can play across the pack from prop, to back row, to loose forward.
Sao has had stints at two NRL clubs in Manly and current side New Zealand Warriors. He is the fourth overseas signing to commit to Hull FC alongside Mahe Fonua, Manu Ma’u and Tevita Satae. Home recruits Adam Swift, Josh Jones and Jordan Johnstone have also been signed up.
Speaking on his decision to join the club, Sao told the clubs official website: “I’m pretty excited to be heading over to Super League and to Hull FC. I know the club have been going pretty well over the past few years so I’m really pleased to be joining a positive environment which that success has created.
“As a Rugby League player in Australia, a lot of players who make the move to Super League do so at the back end of their career, but I saw this as a big opportunity for me while I’m in the prime of my career to show what I’m about.”
He continued: “I’m aware of how impressive the club have been in recent years – the boys are going pretty well this season and obviously there was the two Challenge Cups a few years back, so for me it was a chance to push myself to the next level. You can’t turn down a big club and a big chance like this.
“My family are really excited to move to the UK too. We’ve loved our time in New Zealand but it’s an exciting time for them too to see the other side of the world.”
Sao is Auckland-born, and actually joined the Warriors as a junior where he played with Carlos Tuimavave before heading to Sydney’s Northern beaches in Manly.
He then returned to the Auckland based side to play under former Hull FC Cup winner Stephen Kearney.
Hull FC head coach Lee Radford commented: “Like all our new recruits, Ligi fits the bill in terms of his character and attitude which was a big factor in our recruitment this year.
“I know James (Clark) has spent a lot of time speaking to all our 2020 signings, Ligi in particular, and he like everyone we have spoken to about him have all sung his praises.”