St Helens this morning have completed a remarkable acquisition as they have confirmed the signature of Fijian flyer Kevin Naiqama from Wests Tigers who has penned a three year deal from 2019.
The experienced full back or centre has scored 47 tries in 102 NRL appearances and Saints coach Justin Holbrook is understandably delighted. “Kevin is a great coup for the club and we’re really looking forward to having him on board next season,” continuing that, “he has a wealth of experience in the NRL and, as current captain of Fiji, will bring leadership to our side. He’s lightning quick too, with great hands, and can finish from all over the park.”
The move has been one which has been speculated over the last couple of weeks and it could call into question the future of the mercurial Ben Barba who has been linked with a move in the opposite direction recently. Nevertheless, Naiqama, 29, said of his move that “I am really looking forward to getting over to St Helens for the next three years. The thought of winning a Super League Grand Final or Challenge Cup would be unreal and I feel I can do that with the Saints and the squad they have.” He further continued that “I have a lot to offer; I am a versatile player who can play on the left or right and I still feel I am learning too. I don’t feel I have reached the pinnacle of my football yet and St Helens can help me do that. I feel they can bring more football out of me defensively and with the ball in hand.”
If Barba remains at the club for 2019, it would leave St Helens with a truly remarkable backline feature both Naiqama and Barba alongside the likes of Tommy Makinson, Mark Percival and Regan Grace – with Adam Swift not even finding a place in their first choice line up at present.