Munster have announced the signing of Waikato’s outside centre/wing Save Tokula for the remainder of the season. The Fijian-born outside back was a member of the Chiefs 2011 Super Rugby Squad, while he has also represented the New Zealand Sevens team on a number of occasions. The 26-year-old weighs in at around 96kg and stands 6’1″ tall. As his strong sevens background suggests, Tokula is an elusive, explosive player. He will arrive in the province over the coming weekend.
Munster coach Tony McGahan clearly felt he was short of options in midfield after Will Chambers’ return to Australia last month. Tom Gleeson and Troy Smith are still out injured so McGahan has made this short-term move to cover any other injuries. Youngsters Danny Barnes and Scott Deasy will hope that Tokula’s impact doesn’t deny them any valuable playing time. Tokula is quite an unknown entity in these parts (only clip I could find), so for that reason the signing is somewhat exciting. Still how much do these short-term signings really add to Munster?
Meanwhile, Munster tighthead prop Peter Borlase has moved to Connacht on loan for the rest of the season. The New Zealander has yet to make an appearance for Munster this season due to his struggle with a back injury. The ex-Canterbury and Crusaders man will provide cover for the injured Connacht props Dylan Rogers and Rodney Ah You.
Since joining in 2010, Borlase has only made 4 starts for Munster, so it will be interesting to see how he fares if given a chance with the western province. Borlase is only 26, and will become qualified to play for Ireland in 2013, so his progress at Connacht should be watched closely. After overcoming his lengthy injury, and playing a number of games with Munster A recently, Borlase will surely be desperate to prove himself at a higher level.
What’s your opinion on these two moves? Did Munster really need to bring in another back? Do you think it shows a lack of faith in the younger players’ ability to step up? Or would you like to see a few more short-term signings for Munster?
What do you make of the Borlase move? Do you think he has the ability to go on and play for Ireland when he is qualified? Comment below with your opinions…