Kenyan International Willy Ambaka has formally joined New Zealand side Manawatu Turbos.
Visa complications almost shattered the deal but Ambaka, who left the country a few days ago, was finally able to sort out the issues and finalise the deal.
The 27-year-old has come in search of a good environment to hone his fifteens skills, after showing the world what he can do in the faster version of the game.
Turbos posted “It is a pleasure to announce the signing of Kenyan sevens star and Olympian Willy Ambaka.”
“I’m most comfortable on the right wing, but I’m looking at this as a learning experience, it’s always good to have a change of environment”
Having signed Varsity fullback Te Rangatira Waitokia earlier this week, the Turbos have added another outside back to the squad.
He left Nairobi for Wellington on Saturday May 27, 2017 after months of visa implications since Hong Kong 7s.
However, standing 1.93, the man they call the Kenyan Lomu is no stranger to the longer version of the game, having scored 6 times in 10 matches for Lyon as he helped them win promotion to the French Top 14.
This will be the third pro stint for the Quins flyer who rose to prominence in the World Series scene especially in the 2012/13 season having been handed his debut back in 2011.
Willy’s experienced some special moments on the sevens circuit, such as being a key member of the team which lead Kenya to its first ever stage win in Singapore, but our new signing has made it clear he’s here to achieve some equally special fifteen’s aspirations.
“Super Rugby is definitely the goal, but I’m just really looking forward to putting in some good performances for the Turbos”
On top of that he’s also keen to soak in all New Zealand has to offer, although he may be hesitant about the odd thing.
“Some of the boys already want to take me skiing. I’m a little sceptical about that to be honest”.
Willy will be playing his club rugby for Feilding Old Boys Oroua as Turbos said “we can’t wait to see him with ball in hand in the green and white”.