UKUMA TA’AI can’t wait to show Super League what he can do.
The former New Zealand Warriors back-row forward (pictured) trained with his new Huddersfield Giants teammates for the first time yesterday.
A delay in receiving a work permit meant the 25-year-old 6ft 3in 16st 7lb Tongan international missed all of his new club’s pre-season work.
But the new signing is already setting his sights on a place in Sunday’s side to face London Broncos at the John Smith’s Stadium in Huddersfield’s opening home game in Super League XVIII – and make an immediate impact in the process.
“If I get the chance, I’d love to play,” said Ta’ai, who has been handed a three-year contract after making 52 appearances for the New Zealand Warriors in the Australian NRL.
“I’m obviously a bit behind the rest of the boys because I missed pre-season, and they got that brilliant win at St Helens the other night without me.
“But I’ve come here to play, and that’s what I want to do this weekend.
“I’m really excited to have finally got here, and I’m really excited to show everyone what I can do.
“I love the physical side of the game and trying to get on top of the opposition.
“That’s a reputation I got playing in the NRL, and that’s the reputation I want over here in Super League.
“I suppose not many people in England will know much about me at the moment, but I hope they soon will!”
And Ta’ai is relishing the chance to play in such a big Giants pack.
“One of the first things that struck me about this team is the size,” he added.
“All of the boys look capable of doing some serious damage.”