Saracens have signed Samoan second-row Fa’atiga Lemalu on a short-term deal from Japanese Super Rugby side the Sunwolves with immediate effect.
Lemalu is the vice-captain for Samoa and moves to London following the news that George Kruis will be ruled out for 12-weeks with a knee injury.
Will Skelton was providing cover at lock for Saracens but returned to the Waratahs in January to prepare for Super Rugby.
Saracens were left short in the second-row when it was announced that Alistair Hargreaves had to retire due to concussion in October.
Lemalu has won 18 caps for Samoa after making his debut in 2012 but missed the 2015 World Cup due to injury.
The New Zealand born 27-year old can also play in the back-row and has played in Japan with the Munakata Sanix Blues in the Japanese ‘Top League’ and latterly with the Sunwolves in Super Rugby.
“Fa’atiga is an international lock forward entering the prime of his career,” said Saracens director of rugby Mark McCall.
“With the unfortunate injury to George Kruis we are very happy to have the opportunity to bring in a player of his ability into the set-up. It’s a new challenge for him and he is excited to have the chance to test himself in the Aviva Premiership and Champions Cup.”
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