Ambitious: Lalakai Foketi is targeting a run-on role for the Rebels in this year's Super 15. Photo: Getty Images
The Melbourne Rebels have bolstered their back-line depth with the signing of Australian under-20s representative centre Lalakai Foketi.
The former Australian Schoolboys team member won a contract with the Super Rugby franchise after impressing coach Tony McGahan. A graduate of Sydney rugby nursery, The King’s School, 19-year-old Lalakai has been added as a supplementary squad member.
‘‘Lalakai has been a great addition to our club and playing group here in Melbourne,’’ McGahan said. ‘‘I look forward to watching him grow as a full-time member of the squad, and I’m sure he will be ready for any opportunities that do come his way.’’
Foketi, who plays with Manly in the Sydney competition, said he was eyeing a place in the main squad. ‘‘Eventually getting into the main squad and maybe even pushing for the bench in a couple of games would be great,’’ he said. ‘‘I really want to feature in the National Rugby Championships if possible and, hopefully, I can secure a full contract if I work hard over the course of the season.
’’The Rebels play their first Super Rugby trial against the Waratahs in Albury on February 1.