The past year has been an absolute whirlwind for Auckland born Irae Simone. Simone is a naturally talented footy player, originally starting out in Rugby League and signing with the South Sydney Rabbitohs fresh out high school.
The then 18-year-old played two seasons with the U20s Souths team before deciding to make the switch to Rugby Union.
Simone linked up with Norths Rugby Club, and was an integral part of the team that won the Shute Shield premiership and broke a 41-year winning drought.
Simone made such an impact in his first season in the Shute Shield he was contracted by the Waratahs before the season had even finished.
After winning Rookie of the Year at the Shute Shield Awards, Simone went on to star in the Sydney Rays NRC side and also won the Rookie of the Year award in the NRC.
Simone made his debut in the first round of the 2017 Super Rugby season, and now has 10 caps under his belt for the Waratahs.
Irae Simone now lines up for a second season with the Sydney Rays in the 2017 NRC season.