Front row rock Tevita Taumoepeau will keep on packing down for Worcester Warriors after he pledged his future by signing a new contract at Sixways Stadium.
Taumoepeau – a huge cult hero for Worcester fans – has been a cornerstone of the Warriors pack since arriving at the club in the summer of 2005 from French outfit Bourgoin.
The tighthead juggernaut has also impressed in playing spells at the Chiefs and Blues.
The Tongan international, who has played 29 times for his country, is regarded as one of the best signings at Warriors in recent times as he has gone on to dominant front row battles in both the Premiership and RFU Championship.
Taumoepeau – affectionately known to everyone at Warriors as Big Dave and named Players' Player of the Year in 2007/08 – played his 150th game for the club in the play-off against Nottingham Rugby last Friday night.
Forwards Coach Phil Davies praised the performance’s of the durable 36-year-old this season and believes Taumoepeau can continue to make a big impact for the Warriors next season.
“Tevita is one of the best tightheads I have worked with, particularly in terms of his scrummaging, and he brings real solidity to the pack.
“He has worked very hard this season on his game and his improved conditioning means he now gets around the field and makes an even bigger contribution.
“I am very confident he will continue to do a fantastic job for the Warriors and alongside Bruce Douglas and Oliver Tomaszczyk we have a really nice balance in terms of experience and talent in our tighthead division.”
Taumoepeau said: “I’ve really enjoyed my time at Sixways and Worcester Warriors has become my home over the last six years where I have great team-mates and wonderful fans who support me.
“This season I have been happy with how I have played and feel I am in some of the best shape of my career. I feel different and I am now more involved with games.
“We are taking each game at a time in the physical league play-offs, but I am confident we can win promotion and go back to the Premiership if we play our best.”