Taniela Tuiaki has been named winger in Wests Tigers’ Team of 15 Years.
After switching from rugby union earlier in his career, Tuiaki made his first-grade debut for Wests Tigers against the New Zealand Warriors in Round 11, 2006, where he scored two tries off the bench. The powerful winger was quickly promoted to the starting side the next match, and quickly rose to become one of the most explosive players in the competition.
Tuiaki played 78 games for Wests Tigers before suffering an ankle injury in the Club’s Round 23 clash against the Parramatta Eels in 2009.
Despite missing the final three games of the year, Tuiaki finished the year as the competition’s leading try-scorer, and his 21 tries scored that year remain the most scored by a Wests Tigers player in a single season.
He was named Dally M’s Winger of the Year for 2009.
Tuiaki missed all of the 2010 season as he continued his rehabilitation from his ankle injury suffered the year before, and was eventually forced into an early retirement before the start of the 2011 season, aged 28.
The New Zealand international finished with 42 tries for the Club in 78 games.
Player Profile: Taniela Tuiaki
D.O.B — 2nd May, 1982
Position — Wing
Club Debut — Round 11, 2006 (vs. New Zealand Warriors)
Rep. Honours — Tonga (2006), New Zealand (2007)
Club Honours — Dally M Winger of the Year (2009), Most Tries in a Single Season (2009)