Northampton Saints Rugby Club has announced the signing of Kenyan international Josh Weru ahead of the 2022/2023 Gallagher Premiership Rugby season.
Weru who began his career at Stowe School caught the eyes of the Saints coaches, particularly due to his power and speed. He is among the nine players who have been promoted to the senior side.
“The Kenyan-born 18-year-old put pen to paper on his first professional contract after catching the eye of Saints Academy coaches Mark Hopley, Will Parkin, Jake Sharp and Tim Grimsey, and became the ninth player to graduate from the Club’s Under-18s side ahead of the 2022/23 season.
“An athletic back row who predominantly features at No.8 or blindside flanker, Weru has been a part of Saints’ Academy set-up since the age of 14 – scouted originally at Stowe School before he moved to Rugby School to complete his A-levels – and is now training with Phil Dowson’s squad in Northampton with preseason preparations underway ahead of the new campaign,” read the press release from the club.
According to Will Parkin, the club’s under-18 coach, Weru’s development was slowed down by multiple injuries during the 2021/2022 season.
“Josh unfortunately had to contend with a couple of injuries last season, so we didn’t see as much of him in the Academy League as we’d have liked, but the considerable impact he made on the pitch when he played proved to us that he has what it takes to make the step up.
“His ball-carrying ability is amongst the very best we’ve seen at Under-18s level, and he still has a huge amount of potential thanks to his natural power and speed,” stated Parkin.
Parkin added that although Weru will have to improve some sides of his game including the technical one, he would thrive at Northampton Saints.
“Josh has some work to do on the technical side of his game, but he certainly won’t lack the work ethic to develop himself at Saints around studying full-time for a degree in Loughborough,” he revealed.
The Saints finished fourth last season with 75 points behind Leicester Tigers, Saracens and Harlequins. They will be seeking to improve their performance in the upcoming season which will run from September 9 to May 27 2023.