by Nigel Melville
Nigel Melville Direct
I was delighted to read today that Northampton Saints have handed a new three-year deal to American forward Samu Manoa.
The 26-year-old, who joined from San Francisco Golden Gate in the summer, has featured 23 times in his debut Premiership season.
“I’m very happy to be here,” he said. “The club’s been great to me and my family so that’s why I decided to stay here and sign this contract.
“Every single game I’ve played in has been a highlight for me.”
The former concrete layer, who plays either second row or number eight, added: “Coming from the San Francisco Golden Gate Super League in the States and jumping straight into the pros was big for me at the time.
“I’ve been learning a lot and at this stage I’m pleased with how I’ve been playing.”
Director of rugby Jim Mallinder said of the one-cap USA international: “Samu has adjusted to the professional game well and is starting to make his mark in Premiership rugby.
“He is a natural athlete and has all the skills and physical attributes to be a good player.
“But he is just at the start of his professional career and there is more to come as he gets more game time and experience.”
With an impressive resume as player, coach and administrator, Nigel David Melville took over as CEO and President of Rugby Operations of USA Rugby, the National Governing Body of the sport in America, in 2006. In addition to his full time job promoting the sport in the U.S., Melville has launched his own blog, Nigel Melville Direct, to further the discussion and his passion for what it will take to make the U.S. a great rugby playing nation.
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