Warrington confirm signing of Kiwi international Hiku

Warrington Wolves have confirmed the signing of New Zealand international Peta Hiku on a two-and-a-half-year deal.

Hiku, a versatile star who can play at centre and halfback, joins the club with immediate effect from Penrith Panthers, subject to a visa.

The Wolves claim they have fended off “serious competition” from the NRL to land the former Manly star, who has made nine appearances for Penrith this season.

He started his career with the Sea Eagles back in 2013 before joining the Panthers in 2016.

Hiku was part of the New Zealand side that won the Four Nations in 2014 and has made nine appearances for the Kiwis so far.

Warrington’s head of coaching and rugby Tony Smith said: “Having spoken to Peta he’s excited about coming over and continuing his successful career here in Super League, giving us the boost in the positions we need.

“He’s a high-quality player with plenty of experience, having represented his country, so to come up with a quality signing like Peta is very exciting; he will add a lot to the group. I’m really looking forward to working with him.”

Hiku added: “I’m very grateful for this opportunity and excited to come and join a great club. Everyone has been very welcoming. I’ve heard nothing but good things about the club and the team. I just can’t wait to get over there and play some footy.”

Smith must now decide where to play Hiku ahead of his arrival. A place in the centres looks the most likely scenario for the 24-year-old, with the Wolves struggling with injuries in their backline.