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The 'Tongan Thor' is making a big impact on Australian club rugby

The 18-year-old prop shot to international fame after a viral video last year.

TANIELA TUPOU SHOT to widespread international fame last year when a video of his ball-carrying exploits in New Zealand schools rugby went viral, and it appears the ‘Tongan Thor’ hasn’t slowed down since.

Tupou’s performances and astonishing physique made the Sacred Heart College prop highly sought-after by professional clubs in New Zealand and further afield.

The Tongan-born 135kg front row subsequently signed a two-year deal with the Queensland Reds in Australia and while he has yet to feature in the Reds’ senior squad, the 18-year-old has been making an impact in club rugby.

Source: Mary Tonisa/YouTube

The superb long-range try above helped Brothers to a 32-18 victory over Sunnybank in the Brisbane Premier division last weekend. As with last year’s compilation of his scores for Sacred Heart, this video is being picked up around the rugby world.

The Tongan Thor has featured intermittently at tighthead for Brothers this season, playing alongside his brother, 25-year-old back row Criff. Both Tupou brothers have ambitions of playing Super Rugby for the Reds in 2016.

The above try is not the only impressive feat of the Tongan Thor’s time with Brothers, as the below video of his excellent run and offload for a Sam Greene try during the 26-5 victory over GPS garnered attention back in April.

Source: The Waterboy/YouTube

There was also this spectacular bosh over the top of the Souths’ fullback Andrew Muirhead to score in Brothers’ 24-17 win over their rivals just last month (go to 4:22 in the below video):

Source: queenslandreds/YouTube

This is almost certainly not the last we’ve heard of the Tongan Thor.

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Murray Kinsella

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