Eels add Esi Tonga to NRL signings - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Eels add Esi Tonga to NRL signings

19/05/2011 05:05:18 PM Comments (0)

Parramatta have bolstered their backline stocks for the next NRL season, securing young Gold Coast centre Esi Tonga on a two-year deal.

Forced out of the Titans by their purchase of Jamal Idris, Tonga joins Chris Sandow and Ben Roberts as the Eels recent signings.

The 23-year-old has been hampered by injuries in his young career, but has shown enough promise to catch the eye of Parramatta coach Stephen Kearney, who can see a bright future for the younger brother of Queensland Origin star, Willie.

Willie Tonga made his NRL debut for Parramatta back in 2002, and Esi said he was looking forward to bringing the family name back to the blue and gold.

"I was really impressed with the plan the Eels have moving forward and I feel I'll be able to play my best footy there," said Tonga.

"I want to thank the Titans - I've been with them since I was a young bloke coming into first grade.

"I'm hoping to take my footy to the next level and I feel like I'll have the best opportunity to do that at the Eels under Steve Kearney."

Kearney said the Tonga announcement, following on from securing Sandow and Roberts, showed the Eels were heading in the right direction.

"Esi is a dynamic outside back who can add a lot to our squad and we're looking forward to having him with us next year," he said.

"He's only young and had a bit of trouble with injuries last year, but has already shown he is a real threat out wide."

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