Place of Birth: Vaini, Tonga
Senior Club: Brothers
School: Sacred Heart College, NZ
Tonga Under-14 (2009-2010)
Auckland Under-16 (2011-2012)
NZ Marist Under-18 (2013)
Pacific Barbarians (2014)
Queensland Reds Wider Training Squad (2015)
Queensland Country NRC (2015-2016)
Queensland Under 20s (2016)
Wallabies development player (2016)
Since shooting into the spotlight on his 18th birthday by scoring a hat-trick in a New Zealand school match, Taniela ‘Tongan Thor’ Tupou has been turning heads.
While the remarkable youngster has maintained his reputation for bullocking runs, he has worked hard to develop his scrummaging and other elements of the game, crucial for a successful tight forward.
Tupou has enjoyed a steady progression since moving to Ballymore as an 18-year-old – from menacing club Rugby sides while rampaging for Brothers, to the National Rugby Championship with Queensland Country and the tougher proving grounds of Super Rugby with the St.George Queensland Reds before finally earning a Test debut against Scotland at Murrayfield, just three days after he became eligible to represent Australia.
Although he is still young, Tupou has brought success to the teams he has been a part of – claiming a Super U20s title with Queensland and the Hospital Cup with Brothers in 2016 and winning the National Rugby Championship with Queensland Country in 2017.
The 128kg, 21-year-old prop grew up in Tonga, but moved to Auckland to join Sacred Heart College on a scholarship in 2011, after touring New Zealand with a Tongan Under-14 side.
Tupou grew up wanting to play for the Wallabies and joined the St.George Queensland Reds ahead of the 2015 season to begin chasing that dream.
*Please note, the scoring in the National Rugby Championship changed from seasons 1 and 2 to season 3. In 2014 and 2015 tries were worth 5 points, conversions 3 points, penalties/drop goals 2 points. In 2016, tries were worth 6 points, conversions/penalty goals/drop goals 2 points.