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Throwback Thursday | Luciano Leilua

Luciano Leilua was seen as a star of the future when he was crafting his trade at junior level with the St George Illawarra Dragons and it's no surprise he has cemented his place in the NRL with the Wests Tigers in 2020. 

After making his first-grade debut with the Red V in 2016, Leilua has built a reputation as a young back-rower with a barnstorming running game and unwavering potential. 

He represented the New South Wales Under 18s and Australian Schoolboys in 2014 before being named in the 2016 NYC Team of the Year.

He has 35 appearances for the Dragons in the Canterbury Cup NSW, averaging 121m, 26 tackles and four tackle-breaks per game. 

Leilua signed a three-year deal with the Tigers at the end of the last season and after a strong pre-season under coach Michael Maguire, he has made the left-edge well and truly his own in 2020. 

“He offers another dimension to our forward pack and gives us an added edge with his ball-playing and creativity," Maguire said at the time of the signing.

“With more experience and time, I can see Luciano developing into a really strong player for this club and we’re all excited to see him take those next steps in his career here.”

Leilua has recorded 50 first-grade game so far in his career and will be a key cog in the Tigers' hopes of returning to the finals for the first time since 2011.