Tonga’uiha says Manoa has been Saints’ player of the season
Soane Tonga’uiha says Samu Manoa is his Saints player of the season.
Manoa has been unstoppable during this campaign, putting in a string of man of the match performances.
The 28-year-old’s showings in both the second row and the back row have made him a stand-out candidate for top honours come the end-of-season awards ceremony.
And Tonga’uiha admits it would be tough to argue against Manoa, who joined Saints from San Francisco Golden Gate in 2011, picking up the players’ and supporters’ prize.
“Fair play to him,” said the Tongan prop. “He’s landed on two feet, considering he was laying bricks two years ago.
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“He’s done really well and I can’t see anyone else getting players’ player and supporters’ player of the season.
“Jamie Elliott’s been pushing him, but Samu would be my player of the season. He’s unstoppable at the moment.”
Tonga’uiha could be said to have had an impact on his team-mate’s Premiership progression, as he took Manoa under his wing when the American first jetted in from across the Atlantic Ocean.
Manoa, his wife and children lived with Tonga’uiha for the first three weeks of their time in England, but the Tongan is refusing to take credit for his friend’s recent good form.
“I don’t think I had anything to do with his development,” said Tonga’uiha. “He’s a hard worker and he does what’s right for him and his family.
“How he is on the pitch is completely different to how he is away from it and he just works hard and knows what works for him.
“As long as he keeps doing that to the end of the season, I’m happy.”