The Dolphins have signed exciting young back rower Connelly Lemuelu for their 2023 NRL squad.
Currently contracted to the Cowboys, Lemuelu has inked a two-year deal and will join the Dolphins in November as they begin pre-season for their entry to the NRL competition.
Lemuelu began his career as a hard-running outside back that moved from his native Auckland to play at well-known rugby league nursery Keebra Park High School.
He then spent time in both the Wests Tigers and Bulldogs’ NRL systems, before signing a contract with North Queensland and making his top-grade debut in 2020.
He played 13 of his 20 NRL matches for the Cowboys last year, before a serious thumb injury waylaid his on-field contributions.
In 2022, the 23-year-old has completed a transition to the forwards as an edge back rower.
At 190cms and 106kg, Lemuelu has the size and power to impress in his new position, including a two-try performance against Dolphins’ affiliate club Redcliffe in a recent Hostplus Cup match for Cowboys’ feeder club Northern Pride.
Dolphins’ chief executive Terry Reader said the club was pleased to add another talented young player to their already well-stocked forwards roster.
“Connelly is an exciting prospect in his new position and we are keen to see what he can bring to the Dolphins,” said Reader.
“The signing of younger forwards like Connelly, Tom Gilbert and Ray Stone has brought some nice balance to the roster.
“They will complement the class and experience we already have in Felise Kaufusi, Jesse and Kenny Bromwich and Mark Nicholls.
“Once again, this continues our efforts to build a squad for the future and we are excited about the type of player Connelly can turn into in the NRL.”
Born: July 7, 1998 (Auckland, NZ)
NRL debut: v Wests Tigers – 20/6/2020
NRL matches: 20