Vereniki Goneva


  • DOB: 05-Apr-1984
  • Height: 1.78m
  • Weight: 102kg



Vereniki Goneva’s mixture of pace and power made him one of the Aviva Premiership’s most feared attackers during his four seasons with Leicester Tigers prior to joining the Falcons in the summer of 2016. Scoring 44 tries in his 94 outings for the Tigers in all competitions, Goneva signed off for the club by being shortlisted for European Player of the Season for 2015-16 after touching down six times in the Champions Cup. A further seven Premiership tries in his final season in the East Midlands continued the trend for a player who has long known his way to the line. Goneva joined Leicester from French club Tarbes in 2012 after two successful seasons with Colomiers and a handful of appearances in the English Championship for Rotherham. He scored a try on his Leicester debut against London Welsh and ended the 2012-13 campaign with 10 from 19 games, scoring in the Premiership final victory over Northampton as the Tigers clinched the league title. The devastating strike runner followed that up by becoming the Premiership's top try-scorer for the 2013-14 season, winning the vote of his peers as the Rugby Players' Association Player of the Year as well as similar awards from Leicester Tigers’ players and supporters. A further seven tries followed in 2014-15 as he continued to show his class at club level, Goneva's international career similarly prolific. His eight Rugby World Cup appearances have yielded five tries having appeared in both the 2011 and 2015 showpieces, his arrival at Newcastle coming after his appearance in the 2016 Pacific Nations Cup. Winning player of the year and players' player after a prolific debut season for the Falcons in 2016-17, Goneva dotted down nine Premiership tries in 18 outings, including the winner at Northampton Saints and a hat-trick at Sale Sharks. Continuing this form into the international window, he scored tries for Fiji against Australia and Italy during the 2017 summer tests. The tries and the accolades just kept on coming in 2017-18, with Goneva winning Premiership Player of the Year and being shortlisted for the RPA award. The winger was the joint-top try-scorer in the Premiership with 13 tries in 19 appearances, including the memorable winner at St James' Park which preceded his Alan-Shearer-style celebration. An absolute phenomenon in full flight, Goneva then went on to spend the summer of 2018 spearheading Fiji's successful push for a fourth Pacific Nations Cup title, winning the top three awards at the Falcons' Big Bash - Player of the season, players' player and try of the season for his effort at home to London Irish.

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