|Full name||Jack Taualii Afamasaga|
2 June 1984 |
Lower Hutt, New Zealand
|Height||184 cm (6 ft 0 in)|
|Weight||106 kg (16 st 10 lb)|
|As of 20 June 2011
Source: RLP & Yesterday's Hero
Jack Taualii Afamasaga (born 2 June 1984 in Lower Hutt, New Zealand) is a New Zealand professional rugby league player of Samoan heritage, currently playing for the Western Suburbs Rosellas in the Newcastle Rugby League competition. He also spent time playing with the Parramatta Eels, Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles, Cronulla Sharks and more recently the Melbourne Storm in the National Rugby League, with stints in the local Queensland Cup and in France. His main position is second row.
Childhood and early career
Afamasaga originally began playing Rugby union in his youth, playing for the 1st XV team at Waiopehu College in Levin (the same high school attended by former All Black Carlos Spencer) and working his way up through several representative teams before he was eventually selected by the Wellington Hurricanes in their schoolboy team.
In 2002, at age 18, and after several seasons in the Hurricanes' youth system playing in the centres Afamasaga was spotted by Parramatta Eels rugby league scout Mark Horo and was signed to the Australian club on a development deal.
He began playing in the junior grades at the Parramatta club during the 2003 season, impressing with his skill, power and pace. Afamasago made his first grade debut during the 2004 season against the Wests Tigers at Leichhardt Oval. He then went on to play five games for the club and showed glimpses of the great potential he possessed eventually going on to win the Eric Grothe Rookie of the Year award.
During the next two seasons with the club, Afamasaga played another six games but could not hold down a permanent first-grade position.
Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles
Afamasaga was offered a new deal at the Eels at the completion of the 2006 NRL season but signed for the Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles instead, deciding to chase a regular first grade spot. He appeared in the 2007 Grand Final, which Manly lost to Melbourne.
However, after failing to crack a regular first-grade spot in 2008 (only playing 2 matches) he has now been released by Manly.
Afamasaga was signed to a trial deal with the Melbourne Storm for the rest of the 2011 season. Signed before the 30 June deadline, Afamasaga is now free to play with the Victorian side and their feeder team on the Cronulla Sharks. He had recently been playing in France for Racing Club Lescure-Arthès XIII and played in the Queensland Cup for the Wynnum Manly Seagulls in 2010.
Newcastle Rugby League
- "NRL's island talent". Samoa Observer. 2008-03-28. Archived from the original on 8 December 2008. Retrieved 2008-08-04.
- Big League 2008 Season Review, Volume 89, Number 31, Oct-Nov 2008, page 38
- "Storm lose Kiwi, now Jack's in the box". The Sydney Morning Herald. 14 July 2011.
- Poching names strong Samoan squad therhinos.co.uk, 6 October 2009