Sopoaga starts career in England with loss for Wasps

Lima Sopoaga
Lima Sopoaga
Former Highlander Lima Sopoaga has started the next stage of his career with a loss.

Sopoaga, who played 92 games for the Highlanders, came on for new club Wasps in the club’s first home game of the new English Premiership season.

Sopoaga (27) started on the bench but came on in the second half in the match between Wasps and Exeter Chiefs.

The Chiefs won a thrilling match 42-31 with Sopoaga getting about 25 minutes coming on at first five-eighth for Billy Searle. The Chiefs topped the English Premiership regular-season standings last year although they lost the  final to Saracens.

Sopoaga kicked a conversion in the match which was a mixed encounter for Wasps as the Chiefs side came home strongly to grab the win.

Sopoaga’s path to start in the No10 jersey for Wasps has become a tad easier after fellow New Zealander Jimmy Gopperth injured his knee in a pre-season game and is expected to miss the bulk of the season.

Searle is also a new arrival at the club and will battle it out with Sopoaga over who will play No10.

Another former New Zealander from Wellington, Brad Shields, also took the field for Wasps in his debut for the club, having moved to England following a long career with Wellington and the Hurricanes.

However, Shields  did not have a fun home debut as he fractured his cheek bone and was taken to hospital after the match.

He is expected to be out for anywhere from three to eight weeks which may force him out of contention to play for England in the test against the All Blacks in November.

Meanwhile, former Otago winger Tony Ensor was red-carded when playing for Stade Francais over the weekend.

Ensor, playing on the left wing, did a tip tackle of a Clermont forward in a breakdown in the 70th minute and was ordered off.Stade Francais went on to lose to Clermont 42-20.

Add a Comment