Munster Rugby have confirmed the signing of Auckland Blues centre Francis Saili on a two-year contract. The 24 year-old has made 33 Super Rugby appearances for the Blues, scoring five tries, and represented Auckland in the ITM Cup on 31 occasions.
Francis Saili made his debut for the All Blacks against Argentina in September 2013 at Hamilton, and was part of the New Zealand Under-20 team that won the Junior World Championship in Italy in 2011.
Last November the Auckland native also featured for the Barbarians, scoring a try against Australia at Twickenham.
Commenting on his move to Munster, Saili said: “I believe this is a fantastic opportunity for me and I am fortunate to move to a team held in such high regard, with values and traditions I can relate to from my time here at the Blues.
“This experience will stand to me as a player and I believe I can continue to improve and grow within the Munster set-up. As difficult as it is to leave the Blues, I look forward to the exciting challenge ahead.”
On confirming the province’s latest signing, Munster head coach Anthony Foley remarked: “We are really pleased that Francis has committed his future to the province. He is a talented centre with an impressive skill-set and he possesses the physical attributes to excel in the northern Hemisphere. I believe he will be a great addition to our back-line and we look forward to welcoming him to Munster.”
Currently involved with the Auckland Blues, Saili will join the province later this year on completion of his 2015 contractual commitments.