The Roar
The Roar


Super Rugby Pacific 2024: The best new signing for each Australian side

Autoplay in... 6 (Cancel)
Up Next No more videos! Playlist is empty -
18th February, 2024
2218 Reads

Plenty of newcomers will join the familiar faces in Australia’s five Super Rugby franchise sides in 2024.

The year is shaping up to be a crucial one for both Australian Rugby and Super Rugby Pacific.

Australia enters the year desperate to turn form around after the disaster that was 2023, and with questions around the depth available on Australian shores as prevalent as ever, the code needs multiple teams to stand up to the heavyweight Kiwi franchises.

The competition will see a significant shake-up, with many franchises in New Zealand welcoming a plethora of new talent and new head coaches. If there is any time for the Australian and Pacific sides to strike, they will scarcely get a better opportunity than now. The competition needs it, too.

Addressing depth issues starts with developing local talent and quality signings, and it should be noted that all five sides have landed some exceptional talent for this upcoming season. 

This is our pick of who we think are the best new signings running out for each respective Australian franchise, and how much of an impact they could have on their side’s campaign:

Massimo De Lutiis (L) has joined the Reds in a coup for the Super Rugby franchise. (Photo: Rugby Australia)


Queensland Reds: Massimo de Lutiis

Here is a name you should get used to hearing a lot more of. A product of the Southport School, de Lutiis has spent his last two seasons in the Brumbies Academy and playing in the front row for Wests Lions in the John I Dent Cup, and has developed into one of the most exciting prospects in the country.

His immense potential was present for all to see during his stint in the Junior Wallabies last year, featuring in several notable wins. 

However, his presence was more noticed when he was off the field, as evidenced by the team’s performance against Ireland when he left the field late in the first half with Australia leading 10-8. The Irish immediately took advantage of a swing in forward pack dominance, and the Junior Wallabies went on to lose 30-10. 

His return to Queensland is a huge grab for new coach Les Kiss, with the 19-year-old likely to link up with 22-year-old Wallabies prop Zane Nonggorr, Alex Hodgman and Fijian veteran Peni Ravai. 

Remember the name. This kid is going to have a huge career.


Miles Amatosero. Photo: Twitter

NSW Waratahs: Miles Amatosero

If you haven’t noticed Miles Amatosero before, you will quickly. A 125kg, 2-metre mountain of a rugby player, it says a lot when you are compared to Will Skelton in terms of sheer size and physicality. 

Amatosero is set to give the Waratahs some quality depth in locks, chomping at the heels of Hugh Sinclair, Jed Holloway and Ned Hanigan.

Watch every match of Super Rugby Pacific ad-free, live & on demand on the Home of Rugby, Stan Sport

A Waverley College product, fresh out of finishing school he moved to France to join Clermont, where he has spent the last three years plying his trade in the Top 14. Picking up 26 caps for his troubles, the lock developed a reputation as a hard, physical workhorse.

A grunt in the engine room is exactly what the Waratahs need, as they address the depth issues exposed in their forward pack last year. Combined with a fit again Angus Bell, Harry Johnson-Holmes, plus new arrivals in Tom Ross and Fergus Lee-Warner (to name a few), they’ll have the makings of a stronger, aggressive pack: one that Amatosero will thrive in.


ACT Brumbies: Harrison Goddard

The Brumbies come into 2024 with by far the most set squad in Australia, with plenty of capable heads ready to replace the likes of Pete Samu and Nic White. Only three new additions were made to their squad, with Lachlan Shaw joining the Brumbies Academy from Brisbane Boys College and Austin Anderson adding further depth to the centres, making the journey across the Tasman from Waikato.

However, their third inclusion, Harrison Goddard, is a very welcome addition to the halves. Having spent his last two years at the Waratahs under Darren Coleman, Goddard brings experience from the Shute Shield, the NRC, and the MLR, as well as the Melbourne Rebels where he played alongside fellow Brumby incumbent Jack Debreczeni.

An experienced head for the age of 25, he will tussle with fellow young gun Klayton Thorn to fill a crucial role as reserve scrum-half, with Ryan Lonergan likely expected to jump into the starting side in a leadership capacity following the departure of White. 

With the Brumbies’ tendency for planning, Goddard will likely serve as a valuable and capable replacement, should Lonergan go down. 


The key for Taniela Tupou succeeding is “happiness”, according to coach Kevin Foote. Photo: Melbourne Rebels

Melbourne Rebels: Taniela Tupou 

How can you not? The Tongan Thor is one of the most recognisable faces in Australian Super Rugby, and while he is still to reach the peak of his form playing for the Wallabies, his ability to carve up at Super Rugby level cannot be understated.

A ruthless ball carrier, aggressive competitor and visceral scrummager, doing justice to his capabilities is almost redundant given his popularity. He’ll have plenty of competition for the starting position on his hands in Melbourne, joining the likes of Pone Fa’amausili, Sam Talakai and Matt Gibbon to create an imposing Rebels scrum. 

However, the challenge facing him is staying fit, having succumbed to several injuries both playing for the Reds and the Wallabies. However, should he rediscover his form at the Stockade, the Tongan Thor has the capabilities to not only put bums on seats but to power Melbourne to a maiden finals berth.

The performance of the Rebels this season will likely hinge on the form of this colossal prop. 

Ben Donaldson of Australia (L) celebrates with fellow new Force signing Nic White at the Rugby World Cup in France (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)


Western Force: Ben Donaldson

The Force have undergone a massive transformation since the arrival of Simon Cron, welcoming 27 new players in 2023 and an additional 11 players in 2024. Shown up both in their physicality, cohesion and depth last year, there were still plenty of positives to suggest that, with a few more quality signings and local additions, the west could trot out a competitive side.

One of the most versatile options the Force will welcome in 2024 is seven-capped Wallaby Ben Donaldson. Fresh off a four-year stint with the Tahs that saw him pick up 38 caps, Donno is on the lookout for a club that can push him as a player, and the Force looks set to be the perfect environment for him.

A utility option at both fullback and flyhalf, he’ll address several of the depth issues exposed in the Force backline last year. Add to that, he’ll give Cron plenty of food for thought regarding player options, with Max Burey and Reesjan Pasitoa also in the mix for flyhalf. 

Combined with talented options like Bayley Kuenzle, Sam Spink and Hamish Stewart in the backline and the likes of fellow Wallabies Nic White and Issak Fines-Leleiwasa at scrumhalf, there is plenty to suggest Donno can shine in the west.