Robins sign Tanginoa

7 Nov 2023

Robins sign Tanginoa

Hull KR have announced the club have finalised the signing of Kelepi Tanginoa with the versatile forward signing a three-year deal with the Robins which will keep him at Sewell Group Craven Park until the end of 2026 Betfred Super League season season.

The 29-year-old second rower has moved across Yorkshire from Wakefield Trinity to East Hull after five seasons as a Trinity favourite in West Yorkshire.

Kelepi spent his junior playing days in New South Wales, playing for teams in both Parramatta and Sydney's suburbs, before being signed by NRL side, Parramatta Eels. Aged just 19, Tanginoa made his NRL debut for the Eels in 2013, playing for the West Sydney side for two seasons. The Auburn-born forward then went on to have spells at both North Queensland Cowboys and Manly Sea Eagles.

At the beginning of the 2019 season, Tanginoa signed for Wakefield Trinity. He scored 21 tries in 88 games during his five-year stay while also being selected for the 2020 Super League Dream Team at second-row.

Tanginoa represented his Tongan heritage as he was picked to represent the Combined All Stars in June 2021 and 2022, he was part of the side that defeated England 26-24 in 2021.

Speaking to on his move to the Robins, Kelepi Tanginoa said: "I was really excited when I found out I had the opportunity to come to Hull KR.

"I've known Willie (Peters) since 2017 when we were both at Manly Sea Eagles. So, I know a bit about Willie and what he can bring to a team. When he gave me a call, it was a no-brainer for me.

"I know what Willie can bring out of me as a player and to see what he's brought to Hull KR and the progress they've made in the Challenge Cup and Super League, I'm really grateful to be a part of that next year.

"It will feel pretty comfortable for me entering a new environment knowing a few of the boys. Batch (James Batchelor), Jai (Whitbread) , Yusuf (Aydin) and Corey (Hall) are top quality players, I'm looking forward to playing alongside them again.

"It's exciting. Every time I play at Hull KR, they're probably the loudest fans in Super League. I can't wait to play in front of a home crowd and hear the fans get behind us next year.

"One of the reasons I agreed to come to Hull KR was the progress they're making. What the club did this year was amazing and the ambition they have for the future is bright. To do that next year and for the years to come, I want to be part of that.

"I'm ready to get to work and earn my spot. I'll be showing the players, the club and the fans that I'm here to work of the boys and put my best forward."

Hull KR Head Coach Willie Peters was delighted to welcome Tanginoa to the East Hull: "I'm really happy to get Kelepi (Tanginoa) on board. I've worked with Kelepi when I was a coach at Manly (Sea Eagles). He's always been known as a powerful player.

"Kelepi will bring leg speed and punch to the team. He's been known as one of the better back-rowers in Super League and he made the league's Dream Team in 2020.

"Kelepi has joined Hull KR because he sees the vision of where the club is going and he wants to win silverware. He's hungry for success and those are the players we want at Hull KR."