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Force sign Reds second rower Matwijow

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Perth’s Super Rugby franchise the Western Force have signed Queensland Reds lock Ben Matwijow for the 2017 Super Rugby season.

The 26-year-old lock joined the Queensland Reds this season as injury cover for Wallaby Kane Douglas after winning the ITM Cup with Canterbury and went on to earn 11 caps in his debut season including five appearances in the starting side.

Matwijow is no stranger to the Western Force after linking up with the club in a training capacity in 2013 before his successful stint in New Zealand.

The 197cm, 117kg lock says he is excited to sign on with the Force and is looking forward to taking his game to the next level alongside Force locks Adam Coleman and Ross Haylett-Petty.

“I’m really excited to be coming to the Force,” he said. “And I’m looking forward to getting back over there and helping the club move in the right direction.”

“I’ve sort of come full circle after spending some time with the Force back in 2013 and I’m excited to get back and hopefully play some Super Rugby for the club that gave me my first crack.

“I’ve been really impressed with Adam Coleman and Ross Haylett-Petty this season. I’d played against Adam a bit before in Sydney club footy and I’ve been impressed by what Ross did this season with his great work rate. So I’m looking forward to getting over there, having some competition and hopefully making each other better.”

Western Force Interim head Coach Dave Wessells said the signing of the powerful lock is a strong acquisition for the club moving forward.

“Ben is someone who we first got to know in 2013 and have kept an eye on since,” he said.

“We’re delighted now to be able to bring him back into the group.”

“Ben stands out as an incredibly hard worker both on and off the field – he is a qualified accountant and brings a real workman-like quality to our second row.”

“He is also extremely humble and motivated and is just the sort of character we feel will add to the richness of our group as we continue our journey.”

Matwijow will ply his trade for Taranaki in New Zealand’s ITM Cup before making the journey west to link up with Force.

“I’ve just always looked to the ITM Cup as a great way to develop my rugby and I’ll try to add few strings to my bow before I head over to Perth and get ready for Super Rugby in 2017.”

Profile:
Ben Matwijow
Height: 197cm
Weight: 117kgs
DOB: 14/2/1990
Position: Lock
Super Rugby Debut: 27 February, 2016 v Waratahs
Super Rugby Caps: 11

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