NSW Waratahs lock Sam Lousi is changing Super Rugby allegiance, signing for New Zealand’s Hurricanes until the end of 2018.
The former Warriors rugby league forward will return across the Tasman to play for Wellington in this year’s national provincial championship.
“It was a very hard decision to make, as the Waratahs have given me the opportunity and I have enjoyed my time there,” he said.
“When the opportunity came along to join the Hurricanes and move home it was too hard to turn down.”
The Auckland-born 24-year-old, brother of Warrior Sione Lousi, made three NRL appearances off the bench.
He switched codes to join the Waratahs ahead of the 2015 season but was then hampered by injury.
Lousi has been used mainly as an impact player and the Hurricanes got a close-up look at him in their 28-17 win over the Waratahs last weekend, when he came on midway through the second half.
Hurricanes coach Chris Boyd sees the 1.99m and 128kg Lousi as an exciting prospect.
“Sam is a big, powerful man and has a lot of raw potential, so we’re looking forward to helping him develop his game,” he said.
“I’m sure he’ll fit in really well at the Hurricanes.”