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New Coventry Rugby signing Daf-Rhys Tiueti is living proof that childhood dreams can sometimes come true.

The powerful 22-year-old centre who joins Alex Rae’s squad for an assault on the Championship title next season says one of his earliest memories involves kicking a ball around on the perimeter of the Butts Park Arena pitch.

The eyes of the Cov faithful at the time were on an older member of the Tiueti family – Daf’s Tongan international father David – who scored six tries in 22 appearances for the blue-and-whites during the 2005/6 season in a career that took in spells with Bristol and the Ospreys in addition to the 1999 World Cup.

But fast forward 19 years and following a season at Nottingham during which he made 14 appearances and scored three tries, Tiueti junior may be about to claim his share of the limelight.

“Dad was a centre/winger who had a year at Cov and I remember quite well running around the pitch with a ball there,” he said.

“Playing at the BPA on Boxing Day for Nottingham was incredible. The atmosphere created by 5000 fans was really special and I was also really impressed by how good Cov’s team was and how they play.

“The noise the fans made was incredible and it made a superb environment for us to play in.

“Put all that together and it feels like the right place for me to be. I’m hoping to continue to develop as a player and contribute as much as I can to the squad.”

Tiueti first came to Cov’s attention as the other half of a Cardiff Met University centre pairing involving Will Rigg who in February moved to Premiership outfit Exeter following an outstanding season-and-a-half in the West Midlands.

And according to head coach Alex Rae the latest Cardiff Met graduate to follow props Eliot Salt and Ollie Andrews plus his former midfield partner to the BPA is an equally exciting prospect.

He said: “It’s great to welcome Daf who has a previous connection with the club and the city.

“He was a standout in BUCS rugby and has since done really well in the Championship with Nottingham.

“We see a player with huge growth potential plus a great skillset and are really confident he will flourish in this environment and really kick on again.”

More announcements will follow regarding the make-up of the 2024/25 squad.

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