Melani Nanai commits to Worcester Warriors at least until 2023

Melani Nanai joined Worcester Warriors in 2019 from Blues
Melani Nanai joined Worcester Warriors in 2019 from Blues
©Steve Haag

Worcester Warriors wing Melani Nanai has signed a new contract that will keep him with the Gallagher Premiership club at least until 2023.

Nanai joined Worcester Warriors in 2019 but was sidelined by a shoulder injury on his debut season. However, with the pandemic coronavirus suspending the competition since March, he has now made a successful recovery and would be able to resume playing when the competition starts again.

The 26-year-old has played six Premiership games for the club - all of it coming in 2019 and he feels he still has a lot to offer with the club.

“It was an easy decision to make. I haven’t had as many opportunities as I would like because of the injury but I just want to prove myself here and show what I can do,” Nanai said.

“With the Coronavirus I have had a lot of time off and that’s give me time to heal my shoulder.

“The Premiership is a different style of rugby to back in New Zealand. There’s a lot of contact involved but it’s given me the opportunity to see what the competition is like here.

“It’s good to see the potential that we have in the squad here. A lot of the talented young boys have been signing contracts and there are a lot of good youngsters coming through.”

Nanai, who can also play at fullback started his career with provincial side Auckland in 2014 and went on to make Super Rugby debut for Blues a year later.

Worcester Warriors director of rugby Alan Solomons is delighted with Nanai's decision to remain with the club.

“I am delighted that Melani has decided to extend his stay with us until the end of the 2022/2023 season,” said Solomons.

“Melani oozes talent and is an X-Factor player who established himself as one of the leading lights of Super Rugby.

“The past season has been difficult for him due not only to having to play back-to-back seasons, but also because of injury.

“He is now rehabbing well from his shoulder operation and should be good to go when we start playing again.