Sitiveni Sivivatu, the powerful All Black wing, has arrived at last at his French club Clermont Auvergne.
The Marcel-Michellin fans were keen to meet him after the arrival of several other preseason recruits - David Skrela, Lee Byrne, Regan King and Vosloo. At last he arrived and was introduced to the fans on Saturday when the Auvergnats celebrated with a 54-3 victory over Aironi, the Italian club from Viadana.
The Clermont fans were envious of Toulouse for whom Mike Burgess was playing so well and Bayonne with Mike Phillips and they wanted their powerful All Black wing. The reasons for the delay in his arrival are unclear as he was originally expected on 1 November 2011. There were visa problems and a plane connection missed in Paris and possibly other things before he reached Montferrand. And apparently he arrived in good health, over his problems with an injured knee. He underwent a medical examination and was declared heathy enough to play though not match fit after a three-month lay-off.
On arrival shy Sivivatu said that he was eager to get playing again. "I missed the World Cup and now want to take on a new challenge, my new life with Clermont. The club is one of the best in Europe and it is an honour to play for it. I am impatient to play my first match."
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