Leone Nakarawa closing in on a return to Glasgow – reports
11 December, 2019, 12:18 pm
STAR Fijian lock Leone Nakarawa is reportedly on the verge of a sensational return to his former club Glasgow Warriors, according to French media.
Nakarawa was sacked by Top 14 club Racing 92 after he returned from the World Cup in Japan two weeks late, with a statement from the club slating the 62-test international for setting “deplorable example” for his now-former teammates.
Widely regarded as one of the world’s premier second rowers, Nakarawa’s newfound free agency has spurred interest from clubs around the globe.
However, French newspaper Midi Olympique reported on Monday that the Glasgow managing director Nathan Bombrys has made contact with the 2016 Olympic gold medallist while in France for the Warriors’ Champions Cup victory against La Rochelle on Saturday.
An approach has allegedly been made for Nakarawa to return to his former club, of whom he played 69 times for between 2013 and 2016, and Midi Olympique are reporting that the 2018 European Player of the Year has verbally accepted the offer to move back to Scotland.
Premiership side Sale were thought to be interested bringing the 31-year-old to England, but their director of rugby Steve Diamond ruled them out of the race to acquire his signature over the weekend.
Premiership rivals Wasps are also believed to be chasing Nakarawa’s services, as are Top 14 club Bayonne – who Midi Olympique claims have offered a six-month contract which would commence on January 1 – and the one-time Super Rugby champion Waratahs.
Rugby.com.au reported on Saturday that while the Waratahs wouldn’t be able to match the financial sums thrown Nakarawa’s way by European clubs, it is believed that the three-time World Cup attendee is interested in testing himself in Super Rugby, a competition of which he has never played in.
Moving to Australia to play in the 2020 Super Rugby competition would then pave the way for Nakarawa to return to the northern hemisphere in August ahead of the 2020-21 domestic campaign.
Given his damaging offloading ability and impressive athleticism that few forwards worldwide possess, it’s no surprise to see that Nakarawa is a man in demand across the planet.
Since his departure from Racing 92, the Paris-based club have been left short on locking options, with only35-year-old Irish international Donnacha Ryan, former All Black Dominic Bird and young Frenchman Boris Palu left as their primary second row options.