Sam Matavesi, born on 13 January 1992, is a versatile Fijian rugby union player who currently plays as a hooker for the Northampton Saints in the Premiership Rugby competition. He also had a brief stint with Top 14 side Toulouse.
Despite being primarily a hooker, Matavesi has demonstrated his versatility by playing at blindside flanker and number 8 for Plymouth.
Sam comes from a rugby family, being the younger brother of Josh Matavesi. His father, Sireli Matavesi, originally from Fiji, settled in England in the 1980s and played for Cornwall, a team that all three of his sons represented.
In addition to his rugby career, Sam also serves in the Royal Navy, based at RNAS Culdrose, and plays for their rugby union team.
Matavesi made his debut for the Flying Fijians in a match against Canada during the 2013 IRB Pacific Nations Cup, coming off the bench at number 8. In December 2019, he joined the Northampton Saints in the Premiership Rugby with immediate effect, becoming an integral part of the team.
Educated at the Camborne Science & International Academy and later attending Truro College, Matavesi was part of the team that won the Daily Mail RBS U18 Cup at Twickenham in 2009.
Known for his exceptional skills and fearless approach, he also earned three caps for Fiji, with one of his notable achievements being a County Championship win with Cornwall in 2016.
After joining the Navy in early 2017, Matavesi had the opportunity to play against the Army in the annual Babcock Trophy match at Twickenham. He also represented the UK Armed Forces side. Prior to his time with the Northampton Saints, Matavesi played for Camborne and Plymouth Albion.
He had a brief spell with Racing Metro in Paris before signing for the Cornish Pirates in December 2017.
Matavesi's career skyrocketed in 2019 as his impressive form led to a loan spell with Toulouse, where he won the French Top 14 title. He also earned a place in the Flying Fijians' squad for the 2019 Rugby World Cup.
In May 2021, he had earned 15 international caps for Fiji. Alongside his rugby commitments, Matavesi continues to balance his military career in the Royal Navy, receiving accolades such as the Cossack Sword award in 2018 and the UK Armed Forces Sportsman of the Year award in 2020.
By the end of May 2021, Matavesi had made 27 appearances and scored three tries for the Northampton Saints. He signed a new deal with the club, securing his stay in Northampton for the 2021/22 season and beyond, further solidifying his contributions to the team.
Ahead of the Rugby World Cup 2023, Matavesi has been named in the training squad for Fiji.
|2019 - present|
|2017 - 2019|
|2019 - 2019|