The London Broncos are delighted to confirm Api Pewhairangi has signed a contract with the club until the end of 2017, just two weeks into his four week trial period.
Pewhairangi thoroughly impressed on debut – making his first appearance during London’s 62-4 thrashing of Whitehaven, scoring two tries, and winning Man of the Match.
An ex Parramatta Eels and New Zealand Warriors stand off/centre, the 24 year old New Zealand native also holds an Irish passport – having previously represented Ireland in the 2013 Rugby League World Cup – and joined the Broncos from Connacht RU in the Pro 12
Hailing from Palmerston North, Pewhairangi was signed by the Newcastle Knights at only 16, when he re-located to Australia. He stayed with the Knights, playing in the National Youth Competition, until 2012, when he was selected as a member of the Junior Kiwis squad to play the Junior Kangaroos.
Later signed by Parramatta Eels in 2013, Pewhairangi captained the side in the NSW Cup, and played a total of four games before being side lined with a hand fracture. He was also a member of the NZ Maori team from 2012-2014, and pulled on the Warriors jersey in 2015, again in the NSW Cup.
Speaking post-match, Pewhairangi played down his Man of the Match debut performance, and said he’d found it very easy to settle in with the club.
“I’m happy with it – I was a bit nervous before the game. The boys around me made my job easy today so it’s all worked out pretty well.
“I’m happy also to have signed with the club. I’m looking forward to playing rugby league again, and doing what I can to help this team.
“I’m really enjoying London and the boys I’m living with [Macani, Magrin, Keyes], and I’ve settled in nicely. The environment here’s been really positive.
“I’ve just slipped straight in – there are no big heads here and all the boys have welcomed me in, which has made the transition pretty smooth.”
Head coach, Andrew Henderson, was understandably thrilled to have secured the newcomer on a longer term basis, saying he had fit in to the team with great ease.
“Api’s contribution to the game today was excellent. To say that he’s been out of rugby league for twelve months, and to come here and have his first game and make the contribution he did was fantastic.
“He looked comfortable on the field. In the first two weeks of training he just slotted into the system. I was confident enough in his ability and where he’s at physically and mentally to play him today, and he’s shown us what he is capable of.
“He’s a brilliant addition to our team and we’re looking forward to seeing what the rest of 2017 brings.”