FORMER rugby league star Marika Koroibete will make his much-anticipated debut for the Melbourne Rebels at next year's inaugural Brisbane Tens tournament.
Koroibete, who signed a two-year deal with the Rebels in May, made his professional rugby debut for a Wallaby XV against the French Barbarians in November during the Wallabies' end-of-year Spring Tour.
After throwing the final pass to Ben Mowen for Australia's opening try in the match, Koroibete was relatively quiet in the match and his inexperience at the ruck was exposed.
The flying Fijian is expected to form a lethal wing combination alongside recently capped Fijian-born Wallaby Sefa Naivalu for the Rebels.
Rebels coach Tony McGahan said Koroibete's controversial inclusion for the Spring Tour would have helped with his transition to the 15-man game and said the extra space he will see during the Tens will further help his transition to the game.
"Marika's power, speed and strength will suit the extra space available in the Tens format so we will provide him the opportunity in Brisbane to continue his reintroduction to rugby in a competitive environment,” McGahan said.
"The Spring Tour allowed Marika to transition to rugby with the opportunity to learn and train aside the best players so we're prepared to give him this unique opportunity ahead of the 2017 Super Rugby season.”
The fleet-footed winger, who scored 46 tries in 74 appearances with the Wests Tigers and Melbourne Storm over a five-year rugby league career, said he was excited about playing at the Brisbane Tens.
"I'm looking forward to the opportunity to play for the Melbourne Rebels for the first time in a competitive tournament at the Brisbane Tens,” Koroibete said.
"The Spring Tour was a great opportunity to kick off my rugby journey but I'm excited to continue to develop my game, play with my new teammates and positively contribute to the Melbourne Rebels in 2017.”