International Pathway

  • Saracens U182016
  • England U182018


Manu Vunipola comes from vintage rugby stock and is already well on his way to following in the footsteps of cousins Billy and Mako as part of the England U18s set-up.

Manu received his first call-up to England U18s in early 2018, by which time his two cousins had racked up more than 80 appearances for the England senior side.

His dad, Elisi Vunipola, played in Super Rugby for the Brumbies, as well as appearing 41 times for Tonga – including at the 1995 and 1999 Rugby World Cups – and was his country’s most-capped player upon retirement in 2005.

Unsurprisingly, Manu cites his father as a key influence on his burgeoning rugby career, explaining: “He helps me a lot with understanding the game and on improving my game whenever I’m at home.

"He will tell me what improvements I can make whenever he watches any of my matches.”

Manu, who first played rugby as a five-year-old at Hull RUFC, is comfortable at fly half or centre and was part of the Bath Rugby set-up before moving to Saracens in 2014.

Having been born in Otahuhu, a suburb of Auckland in New Zealand, he attended King Alfred School upon moving to the UK before going on to Harrow School – taking A Levels in politics, sports science and photography.

He was co-captain of Harrow during the 2017-18 campaign, and cites Tonga as his top holiday destination and says that sushi is his favourite food.