Tagata Pasifika

The Pacific voice on
New Zealand television
since 1987

Tagata Pasifika

The Pacific voice on
New Zealand television
since 1987

Moana Pasifika star Levi Aumua joins the Crusaders

Public Interest Journalism funded through NZ On Air
Levi Aumua departs from Moana Pasifika to join Crusaders in the new year. Photo: Moana Pasifika
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Neueli Mauafu | Reporter

“While we would have loved for Levi to stay, his journey exemplifies the critical role Moana Pasifika plays in providing a platform to nurture and develop aspiring rugby players, particularly of Pasifika heritage, to realise their potential as professional athletes, and showcase their abilities,” Moana Pasifika Chairman La’auli Savae Sir Michael Jones.

The rumours are true.

Moana Pasifika’s main man, Levi Aumua, will depart the club at the end of the year and will join the Crusaders on a two year contract.

The news was confirmed by the franchise in a statement released this week, after widespread speculation about his move.

Aumua has played a pivotal role in the clubs first two years. His blockbusting carries and heavy hitting has been feared and marvelled at by opponents and rugby pundits.

However, Aumua is no stranger to the Super Rugby scene, having made appearances with the Blues and Chiefs in 2018-19.

His stint with the Blues in 2019 only earned him 46 minutes off the bench in four games while he made no appearances for the Chiefs.

It is quite a contrast to what he has achieved for Moana Pasifika, with a total of seven tries in 20 games.

Aumua is also in the top two for ‘most defenders beaten’ with an impressive total of 62 this year alone.

His time in the Moana jersey has definitely brought out the best in him, becoming a popular subject of discussion in rugby circles.

His impressive feats with the franchise also landed him a starting spot in the All Blacks XV for their Northern Hemisphere tour last year.

Levi Aumua with Head coach Aaron Mauger

The term ‘pathway’ is commonly mentioned within the Moana camp, as a representation of what the club can do for its players.

It is a term that chairman La’auli Savae Sir Michael Jones associates with Aumua’s journey in the Moana Pasifika jersey.

“Simply put it like this, because of Moana Pasifika more talented Pasifika players get the opportunity to play and realise their full potential,” he says.

“Levi is a remarkable player and his outstanding performance with Moana Pasifika has put him in high demand. We are thrilled to have played a key part in his impressive development within professional rugby over the past two years.

“While Levi’s blockbusting talent will be missed next year, it gives other Pasifika players the same opportunity for professional development that he has had. As an alumni, Levi has only our best wishes and support and his Moana Pasifika family and supporters will be following his career with huge interest”.

For now, Aumua will be committed to finishing the season on a high with his Moana brothers in their remaining games.

The team travel to Fiji this weekend for a repeat of their clash with Pacific neighbours, Fijian Drua.

“It is an incredible honour to be part of the Moana Pasifika family, I have loved my time with the club. My teammates have become like brothers to me. I always wanted to make my parents proud, and I was able to represent both my Samoan and Fijian heritage under the Moana Pasifika banner,” he says.

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