Niko Kirwan and Sam Blackburn sign

Team Wellington is pleased to announce the signings of Niko Kirwan and Sam Blackburn for the 2016-2017 Stirling Sports Premiership. 

Both players had outstanding winter seasons in the Central League with Miramar Rangers and Wellington Olympic respectively.

Kirwan joined Miramar Rangers last season and was a key performer as they finished runner-up to Wellington Olympic in the 2016 Central League and made the Chatham Cup semi-finals. He is the son of legendary All Black Sir John Kirwan and is excited at the opportunity to be involved in a National League franchise.

“It’s great to have the opportunity to play at this level and test myself against the best players in the league. Hopefully I can build on the start that I was given at Miramar Rangers.”

Niko Kirwan fronts for Miramar Rangers in the Chatham Cup, 2016

Niko Kirwan fronts for Miramar Rangers in the Chatham Cup, 2016

Blackburn re-joins Team Wellington after making his debut in the 2007-2008 Season when Team Wellington made their maiden Grand Final appearance against Waitakere United. After spending time in the American University system he returned to the capital and was instrumental in helping Wellington Olympic to their first Central League title since 2010 when they became Champions on the final day of the season.

Blackburn is keen to test himself at National League level again.

“I’ve followed Team Wellington closely since I last played in 2009 and am proud to have worn the shirt and excited to be able to wear it again. The squad looks to be very strong and experienced and it’s just a privilege to be able to train and play with them.”

Team Wellington coach Jose Figueira is pleased to have the local duo on board

“As one of the youngest members of the squad, I am happy to welcome Niko to Team Wellington. After a breakthrough season in the Central League with Miramar, his dynamism and performances beyond his young age bring real energy and enthusiasm to the squad.”

“Sam is another new member to Team Wellington this season. His performances week-in and week-out were a big factor in guiding Wellington Olympic to the Central League title this season and he is another local Wellington based player to join the ranks this season.”