Kiwi rugby great Waaka to sign for Broncos in NRLW

Murray Wenzel |

New Zealand rugby champion Stacey Waaka will join the Broncos in NRLW after the Paris Olympics.
New Zealand rugby champion Stacey Waaka will join the Broncos in NRLW after the Paris Olympics.

Stacey Waaka wants to dominate the NRLW, but not before the New Zealand rugby great attempts to add to her incredible medal haul at the Paris Olympics.

The 28-year-old announced a looming code switch on Wednesday with Waaka to join the Brisbane Broncos once New Zealand’s rugby sevens Games campaign concludes in late July.

She has already won two 15-a-side World Cups plus sevens gold at the 2020 Olympics, 2018 Commonwealth Games and the 2018 World Cup.

Australians Evania Pelite (Gold Coast) and Emma Tonegato (St George Illawarra) have lit up NRLW after winning gold medals at rugby sevens’ Rio 2016 debut, while Kiwi sevens star Gayle Broughton made the move in 2022.

“I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t nervous about joining the Broncos family this season, because I know the success they’ve had in the past,” Waaka said of joining the three-time title winners.

“I will do everything in my power to be the best league player I can be when my time comes.

“I’ve watched this team with a lot of interest from afar, especially with my good mate Gayle in the squad who has excelled so highly since switching codes.

“She alongside other former rugby teammates have all inspired me to take up this new sport.”

Brisbane’s NRLW coach Scott Prince said Waaka could be a beacon for others looking to switch codes.

“It’s very exciting for someone of her calibre to join the ranks,” he said. 

“Her record speaks for itself. I’m looking forward to seeing what she’ll produce on a league field.

“She’ll make an impact with high-flying strong runs. She’s an excitement machine along the edge.”

AAP