Tonga’uiha reveals why he stayed with Saints

Northampton Saints Soane Tonga’uiha says that he decided to stay at Franklins Gardens instead of moving to Saracens because of his team-mates.

Tonga’uiha looked to be all set to make the move to Saracens this summer but made a dramatic u-turn which angered Saracens.

Jim Mallinder was delighted and moved quickly to secure the player’s signature for another three years which will see him battling for game time with Tom Mercey in the Aviva Premiership.

“I was always 50/50 about what to do and in the end I’ve made the decision to stay here,” said the 28-year-old.

“Playing with the boys week-in, week-out really helped me make my decision and once I made it I was happy with that.

“What the boys do for each other on the pitch, having to make tackles and stuff, every team has it, but it’s just a bit more special here because I’ve known the boys for a few years now and I know what they’re like.” he told the Northampton Chronicle.

Tonga’uiha was reported to have been offered a lucrative deal to play at Vicarage Road and there were plenty of lofty figures being bandied about at the time but the powerhouse forward decided that family and friends were more important than money.

“Rugby is a short career and it was that (the money) at first but then you have to sit back and look at it from a family point of view, ” Tonga’uiha added

“My wife is from Bedford and we’ve got three kids, and having to get up and move the kids down there is going to be a massive task.

“Training every day with the boys and playing with them week-in, week-out is always going to be in the back of my mind and in the end I made the decision to stay and I’m glad I made it.”

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