Agnatius Paasi

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Agnatius Paasi
Agnatiuspaasi.jpg
Personal information
Full nameAgnatius Pa'asi
Born (1991-11-30) 30 November 1991 (age 30)
Lapaha, Tonga
Height6 ft 0 in (1.82 m)
Weight17 st 13 lb (114 kg)
Playing information
PositionProp, Second-row, Loose forward
Club
Years Team Pld T G FG P
2014 New Zealand Warriors 1 0 0 0 0
2015–17 Gold Coast Titans 54 7 0 0 28
2018–20 New Zealand Warriors 52 7 0 0 28
2021– St Helens 10 0 0 0 0
Total 117 14 0 0 56
Representative
Years Team Pld T G FG P
2014– Tonga 1 0 0 0 0
As of 18 June 2021
Source: [1]

Agnatius Paasi (born 30 November 1991) is a Tongan professional rugby league footballer who plays as a prop, second-row and loose forward for St Helens in the Betfred Super League and Tonga at international level.

He previously played for the New Zealand Warriors in two separate spells, and also the Gold Coast Titans in the NRL.

Background[edit]

Paasi was born in Lapaha, Tonga, and moved to Auckland, New Zealand when he was three years old.[2]

Paasi played his junior football for Mangere East Hawks. At age 17, Paasi moved to Australia on a scholarship to play for Keebra Park State High School where they won the Arrive Alive Cup in 2009. He also played some Australian rules football for the school.[3][4][5] He was offered a contract with the Wests Tigers under 20's, but complications with his visa saw him return to New Zealand,[5] where he again played for the Mangere East Hawks before being signed by the New Zealand Warriors.

Playing career[edit]

Early career[edit]

In 2011, Paasi played for the Warriors Toyota Cup Under-20s team.[6] On 5 October 2011, Paasi played in the Warriors' 2011 NYC Grand Final victory over the North Queensland Cowboys, playing off the interchange bench in the Warriors' 31-30 golden point extra time victory.[7][8] On 6 October 2011, Paasi was named 18th man for the Junior Kiwis.[9]

Paasi playing for the Auckland Vulcans in 2012

In 2012, Paasi moved on to the Warriors New South Wales Cup team, the Auckland Vulcans, and he also played for the Vulcans in 2013. At the start of 2014 Paasi wasn't contracted to any NRL team but was given a chance to play in the Warriors pre-season games, earning a contract with the Warriors NSW Cup side.

2014[edit]

After a few impressive performances in the NSW Cup, Paasi was handed his NRL debut for the New Zealand Warriors in Round 19 against the Brisbane Broncos, where he played off the interchange bench in the Warriors 28-22 loss at Suncorp Stadium.[10][11] This was Paasi’s only first grade match in the 2014 season. He was named as the Warriors NSW Cup Player of the Year.[12] In November, Paasi signed a train and trial contract with the Gold Coast Titans, starting from 2015.[13] On 16 October, Paasi played for Tonga against Papua New Guinea, starting at second-row in the 32-18 loss in Lae.[14]

2015[edit]

In Round 1, Paasi made his club debut for the Gold Coast Titans against the Wests Tigers, playing off the interchange bench in the Titans 19-18 loss at Cbus Super Stadium.[15][16] In Round 4 against the Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks, he scored his first career try in the Titans 24-22 win at Remondis Stadium.[17][18] Paasi’s good form in the Titans early matches earned him a 2-year contract extension with the Titans.[19][20] He finished his impressive year with him playing in 18 matches and scoring 2 tries.

2016[edit]

In February, Paasi was named in the Titans 2016 NRL Auckland Nines squad, where he was named in the Team of the Tournament. He was described as, "undoubtedly the weekend’s biggest surprise packet" and perhaps the best player of the Nines.[21][22] Paasi enjoyed a solid 2016 NRL season with him playing in all the Titans 25 matches and scored 5 tries.

2017[edit]

Paasi’s 2017 NRL season was limited due to a shoulder injury, playing in 11 matches for the Titans. On 5 November 2017, Paasi was released from his final year of his contract with the Titans to join his former club the New Zealand Warriors on a 2-year deal, starting from 2018.[23][24]

2019[edit]

In Round 24 2019, Paasi played his 100th NRL game in the Warriors 10-31 defeat by the South Sydney Rabbitohs at Mt Smart Stadium in Auckland.

2020[edit]

On 13 November, it was announced that Paasi had signed for St Helens on a two-year deal starting in 2021.[25][26]

2021[edit]

In round 1 of the 2021 Super League season, he made his debut for St. Helens in their 29-6 victory over Salford. Paasi was knocked out in the second half of the game after a collision with Salford player Pauli Pauli.[27] He was awarded Man of the Match on his Challenge Cup debut, spearheading his team's victory over Leeds.

On 17 July, he played for St. Helens in their 26-12 2021 Challenge Cup Final victory over Castleford.[28] On 9 October, he played for St. Helens in their 2021 Super League Grand Final victory over Catalans Dragons.[29]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Agnatius Paasi - Career Stats & Summary". Rugby League Project. Retrieved 6 January 2016.
  2. ^ "Young Warriors made in Tonga". Archived from the original on 2 June 2012. Retrieved 19 July 2014.
  3. ^ "KEEBRA ARRIVE AS NEW CHAMPIONS". ourfootyteam.com. 27 September 2009. Archived from the original on 5 August 2012. Retrieved 6 January 2016.
  4. ^ "KEEBRA FLY HIGH TO TAKE OUT GOLD COAST AFL TITLE". ourfootyteam.com. 13 November 2009. Retrieved 6 January 2016.
  5. ^ a b "Agnatius Paasi's incredible journey to clinch Gold Coast Titans debut". The Courier Mail. 6 March 2015. Retrieved 6 January 2016.
  6. ^ "Vodafone Junior Warriors Headshots, 2 March 2011 - Photosport New Zealand".
  7. ^ Tim Costello. "TEAMS: Grand Final Day 2011". League Unlimited.
  8. ^ "The Warriors Trump the North Queensland Cowboys After an Extra Time Field Goal from Halfback Jordan Meads". Dailytelegraph.com.au. Retrieved 7 March 2016.
  9. ^ "Junior Kiwis field huge line-up". SkySport.co.nz. 16 October 2011. Archived from the original on 26 July 2014. Retrieved 25 March 2018.
  10. ^ "Gutsy Brisband Broncos Fight Back to Beat New Zealand Warriors in Thriller". Couriermail.com.au. Retrieved 7 March 2016.
  11. ^ "Thomas Leuluai back from injury for Warriors". Stuff.
  12. ^ "Agnatius Paasi | NSW Cup award winner - Warriors". Warriors.kiwi. Retrieved 7 March 2016.
  13. ^ "Paasi's puzzling path to the NRL". NRL - The official site of the National Rugby League - NRL.com.
  14. ^ "PNG beat Tonga in Lae". Loverugbyleague.com. 19 October 2014. Retrieved 7 March 2016.
  15. ^ "Agnatius Paasi's Incredible Journey to Clinch Gold Coast Titans Debut". Couriermail.com.au. Retrieved 7 March 2016.
  16. ^ "High shot mars Wests Tigers' last-gasp win over Gold Coast Titans". The Sydney Morning Herald.
  17. ^ "NRL: Titans claim first win of season". The Australian.
  18. ^ "News Article not available". NRL - The official site of the National Rugby League - NRL.com. Archived from the original on 11 July 2015.
  19. ^ "Pettybourne and Paasi re-sign". Titans.com.au. Retrieved 6 January 2016.
  20. ^ Ed Jackson. "Gold Coast Titans re-sign forward pair". Archived from the original on 11 July 2015. Retrieved 19 July 2014.
  21. ^ Nathan Tyan & Ben Glover. "Agnatius Paasi leads Titans to semi-finals of Auckland Nines in most breakout performance". Fox Sports. Retrieved 7 March 2016.
  22. ^ "Gold Coast Agnatius Paasi Close to Player of Tournament in Titans Nines Semifinal Finish". Goldcoastbulletin.com.au. Retrieved 7 March 2016.
  23. ^ "Reference at www.couriermail.com.au".
  24. ^ "Warriors confirm signing of Gold Coast Titans forward Agnatius Paasi | Stuff.co.nz".
  25. ^ "Agnatius Paasi: Tonga prop signs two-year St Helens deal". BBC Sport. Retrieved 15 November 2020.
  26. ^ "The NRL recruits moving to these shores for the 2021 season". www.skysports.com.
  27. ^ "Lomax leads way as St Helens make light work of Salford in season opener". www.theguardian.com.
  28. ^ "How St Helens players have celebrated their first Challenge Cup win in 13 years". www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk.
  29. ^ "Super League Grand Final: Catalans Dragons 10-12 St Helens: Saints win three in a row". www.bbc.co.uk.

External links[edit]