Salford Red Devils have signed Tongan halfback Ata Hingano until the end of the season, with the option to extend for a further two years.
Hingano, who is awaiting visa clearance before he can pull the Red Devils shirt on, is joining from Queensland rugby league outfit Mackay Cutters and can also play at stand-off.
The 24-year-old has also played in the NRL for the New Zealand Warriors and the Canberra Raiders and has represented Tonga eight times at international level, starting every game of the 2017 Rugby League World Cup at halfback for his country.
Hingano will linkup with Tui Lolohea once again, who he has played with during his time at New Zealand Warriors and at international level for Tonga.
Speaking on the addition of Hingano, head coach Richard Marshall said: “Ata is a brilliant addition to the squad and I’m happy to now have everything over the line regarding the signing.
“Having competed at an elite level over in the NRL and for his country, Ata promises to be an exciting player who despite still being quite young, will provide a good level of experience and knowledge.
“We’re looking forward to working with Ata. He’s a great organiser and kicker and he’ll compliment our existing halfbacks. He’s also quite young so still has time to grow and develop.”
Director of rugby and operations Ian Blease said: “I am really pleased that we have secured Ata’s signature for the rest of the season with an option for the following two years. It has been a long process seeking out a quality player, but we are there now.
“Ata will add class, determination and organisation and will give some fresh options for the head coach and for our team going forward.
“With our injury list not improving for some weeks yet, it is important that we show our supporters and sponsors that we are determined to compete at the highest level and Ata’s signing and pedigree gives us that new player injection which I’m really excited about.”