The Ospreys today confirmed that they have signed Samoa captain Filipo Levi from Japanese side Ricoh Black Rams
.The 29 year-old second row, moved to Japan in May 2007 after spending five years playing for Highlanders in the Super 14, making 66 appearances, with a further 70 outings for Otago in the NPC to his credit.
Standing 6ft 6inches tall and weighing in at more than 18 stone, Levi is a physical player also capable of playing in the back-row, who is renowned for his ferocity in the tackle and workload around the pitch.
Levi has played 10 times for Samoa, and has also represented the Pacific Islanders on five occasions. He was part of the Islanders squad that toured Europe last autumn, starting against England at Twickenham and in Italy, as well as coming on as a replacement against France.
Ospreys Head Coach Sean Holley commented: "We are delighted to welcome Filipo to the Ospreys, I'm sure that he will prove to be a valuable addition to the squad over the coming months. He has a wealth of experience at Super 14 and international level, which with his sheer physicality and presence will, I'm sure, see him making quite an impact at the region.
"We have been looking at the possibility of bringing him to the Liberty Stadium for quite some time, so it is great news that we have been able to secure his signature, increasing the options available to us as we look to compete on all three fronts over the next few months."
With Alun-wyn Jones and Ian Gough both on Six Nations duty, Ian Evans ruled out for the season after ACL reconstruction surgery, and Lyndon Bateman suffering a dislocated patella in the left knee playing for Aberavon on Saturday, the news of Levi's signing provides a timely boost for the Ospreys ahead of the end of season run-in.
He will arrive in Ospreylia next week and will be available for selection for the Magners League fixture against Connacht at the Liberty Stadium on Sunday February 22nd (KO 2.15pm).
Wales Head Coach Rob Howley talks to WRU TV's Sebastian Barrett about the 36-man squad he has just named for the forthcoming Under Armour series, which includes two uncapped players, Ospreys duo Sam Davies and Rory Thornton.
Head coach Rowland Phillips is deligthed he can now call BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park home for his Wales Women's side, who launch their international season next month with games against Scotland and UK Armed Forces in the heart of the capital city.
Wales Sevens star Sam Cross has put his home town club of Brynmawr on the map after winning a silver medal at the Rio Olympics with Team GB. His club have now honoured him by naming their players bar after him, as WRU TV discovered at the official launch, recently.
One of the newest members of the Principality Premiership, Bargoed admit it's proving to be a steep learning curve at the highest level, but are determined to become a force to be reckoned with. WRU TV visited the club last weekend when they took on Llanelli.
Table-topping Aberavon travel to north Wales to tackle RGC 1404 as both teams defend unbeaten starts to the season in the Principality Premiership. WRU TV's Graeme Gillespie visited the Wizards to see how their preparations were going for the game of the weekend.
The Half a Game initiative is currently sweeping across Wales and proving a major success. The scheme aims to give every young player at least half a game every weekend. WRU TV recently visited a festival in Narberth where clubs have fully embraced the initiative.
Both Bargoed and Swansea were seeking their first win of the Principality Premiership season this afternoon. It proved a fruitful day for the hosts - not only did they win, but Bargoed claimed a try bonus point.
Cardiff managed to keep their unbeaten record at home intact, but only just as Bridgend made them work extremely hard before the Blue and Blacks secured a hard fought Principality Premiership win at the BT Sport Arms Park last night.
Former Wales back row Andy Powell gives a guided tour of The Wern, home of Merthyr RFC, who are determined to prove a lot of people wrong and make their mark in their first season in the Principality Premiership.