After signing a lucrative three-year deal to move from Melbourne to the Titans at the age of 19, Gold Coast’s new recruit Tino Fa’asuamaleaui is already eyeing a long-term stay in the Sunshine State.
The Maroons second-rower is still waiting for his partner and daughter to make their way to Parkwood at the end of the month, as he currently resides with fellow Titans newcomer David Fifita.
With the club heading in a promising direction and younger brother Iszac making moves as an exciting prospect for the Titans, Fa’asuamaleaui said that having his family close with him was a major factor in his move north.
“One of the first things was that my family live up here and I really wanted to come up and bring my daughter up to my parents and have her grandparents around,” Fa’asuamaleaui said, per NRL.com.
“Plus I just saw the club was moving up.
“They’ve been at the bottom for a while now and I thought it’d be a good opportunity to bring it up and hopefully become a powerhouse in the future. I saw that opportunity and I was really excited.
Tino Fa'asuamaleaui says he's still buzzing after last year's NRL season.
— 9News Gold Coast (@9NewsGoldCoast) January 12, 2021
“Obviously I’m still young but I’m happy here and I’ve still got another two more years.
“And hopefully in the future we can buy a house and stay here for a long time.”
Speaking on his younger brother, Fa’asuamaleaui stated his excitement to hopefully pair up with Iszac, who has looked to overcome a number of injuries, one day down the road.
“It’s good to see that he’s been training well and hopefully he’s on the come up,” Tino said.
“Hopefully I can get some sessions with him and get into him a bit.
“He’s been working so hard for a while now it’s good to see him slowly making his way up and I definitely think that he can make it.
“As long as he keeps working hard I think we’ll see him here one day which would be pretty amazing.
“He was always the better brother growing up until he had his injury and he’s definitely filled up a bit more. He’s almost bigger than me so I might have to watch out for him soon.”
After making his Origin debut with Queensland and playing a major role in his state’s historic 2-1 series victory last year, Fa’asuamaleaui was at the face of his side’s fiery matchup with the Blues.
The Maroons lock sparked a heated exchange with NSW counterpart Payne Haas, an experience he believes the pair both gained from.
“I think it’s good for us,” Fa’asuamaleaui said.
“We’re both young boys and really good mates. There’s no mates on the field and we’ve both had that mentality where it’s just 100 per cent when you get out there.
— NRL (@NRL) November 11, 2020
“It’s good for us, it’s good to have the rivalry out there and hopefully some other young boys coming through can do the same.”
Fa’asuamaleaui will be eyeing the Round 2 matchup with Haas and the Broncos for early bragging rights over their rivals to begin their 2021 campaign.