Pulling on Blue in the NRC
Kalamunda centre, Maalonga Konelio has been called up to represent the Western Force in this year’s National Rugby Championship kicking off this weekend
The former Brisbane City player is a familiar face around the Force having played for the Perth Spirit in their 2016 Grand Final win against the NSW Country Eagles.
Despite injury preventing the 28-year-old from playing much rugby over the last year, he is excited to get back out on the field in the black and blue.
“The young boys motivate me and it’s really exciting to get to play with these guys who always push me to keep going,” Konelio said.
“There’s a 10-year gap between my brother and I so we don’t really have that sibling rivalry.
“My brother is my biggest supporter he gives me those talks to pick me up and help me out when I feel like giving up.”
Maalonga hopes to make the most of his time playing for the Force learning from the other experienced players on the squad.
“My goal is to play well and give it my all, especially to do my part for the team and take that next step in my rugby career,” Maalonga said.
Konelio grew up playing Rugby League in New Zealand and it wasn’t until he moved to Perth four years ago that the centre began playing Rugby Union at Perth Bayswater.
The trainee carpenter commented on how his time-off from injury gave him a chance to stop and think about his rugby journey.
“I had no plan B, I loved rugby so that’s what I had to pursue and that is why I’m happy to be back here playing at the Western Force,” Konelio said.
The Western Force take on Brisbane City this Sunday at Norths Rugby Club, Brisbane with kick-off at 1pm AWST.