A new contract and the birth of his first child has given Kelepi Tanginoa a fresh outlook on life.
The 23-year-old and his partner, Evelyn, welcomed the arrival of their daughter, Noah, at 2.56am on Monday in Liverpool Hospital.
“It was a long labour for Evelyn and I stayed awake to help her out. I didn’t realise what women went through until I witnessed it myself,’’ Tanginoa said.
“Evelyn started contractions on Saturday so the labour was around 37 hours. The doctors called her in, put a drip on her, and made sure she was contracting. Then, the baby decided to come out on Monday morning.
“It was a beautiful moment.”
Tanginoa says the added responsibility of parenthood will help him with his playing career next season after a tough 2017. He recently re-signed a new one year-deal.
The hard-running second-rower/prop joined the Sea Eagles in July after transferring from Parramatta – a club he made his NRL debut for in 2013.
After a settling in period, Tanginoa made his Manly debut this season in the win over the Sydney Roosters at Lottoland in round 22.
It was the show of faith he needed.
“To get a chance to debut for Manly meant a lot. It was a great feeling putting on the Manly jersey, a club with such a rich history,’’ Tanginoa said.
“Trent Barrett brings the best out in me. He is easy to talk to, is a good coach, and is a mate. If you can relate to a coach like that, you know you can get more out of yourself.
“I love playing league but the birth of Noah has now given more meaning to what I do for a living. I now have a little family so I am playing for them next year.
“The move to Manly has been the best thing for me. It is just a different environment and the club is certainly more family orientated.
“You can talk about family or on anything you are going through in your life. It is what I like about Manly. It is open and it makes you feel more welcome. And it helps to bring the boys even closer together.
“By re-signing, it means the club believes in me. I am just happy and overwhelmed with how things have developed.
“To have a contract for next year means I can showcase my ability and hopefully make the most of my opportunity.
“I don’t want to look too far ahead but I want to have a big pre-season and see how far I can go.”