The New Zealand Warriors have confirmed that Tom Ale and Bunty Afoa will both remain with the club until at least the end of the 2025 season.
The duo were both due to be off-contract until the end of the season, with Afoa a permanent part of the Warriors' best 17 in the front row, while Ale has struggled to gain playing time in recent seasons, with injury holding him back.
Afoa is noted as one of the strongest ball-runners in the NRL, and while he has come off the bench for the most part, his impact is unmatched.
Afoa himself was sidelined during 2020, but has played 44 of a possible 48 games since, averaging 81 metres and 23 tackles per game during 2022. A consistent force, he could be in line for a promotion to the starting team this year, pending which role the Warriors elect to use Tohu Harris in.
Ale suffered an ACL injury which saw him only return midway through 2022, but he was part of the first-grade side in the final four rounds where he impressed, and will now have a further two years to push his case for inclusion in new coach Andrew Webster's side.
Webster said both are outstanding players.
“Bunty and Tom are outstanding examples of players who have come through our system and taken their opportunities. They demonstrate real pride in the club and all they do,” Webster said in a statement.
“Bunty was a junior when I was first here and it has been a thrill to watch him develop into a seasoned and consistent first grader while Tom has been hampered by injury but has done everything in the preseason to indicate he'll be an asset.”
The Warriors take on the Wests Tigers and Melbourne Storm during the pre-season challenge, before starting their season against the Newcastle Knights in Wellington on March 3.