Austin Gilgronis signed Pele Crowley for the 2020 Major League Rugby season. The 26-year-old Samoa international scrum-half is 5’9″ and 187 lbs.
Pele was born in Tokora, New Zealand which is the fifth-largest town in the Waikato region of the North Island of New Zealand. He attended Mt. Albert Grammar School and helped the school win the 2010 National Championship.
After finishing high school, according to an Ashley Stanley of Beyond the Mark interview, he played with the Auckland Rugby Academy for three years, spent one season with Auckland’s Development team and then made his debut for Manu Samoa against italy on 8 November, 2016. That was the first of his 15 caps that he has earned for Samoa. He played in three matches at the 2019 Rugby World Cup with his last appearance on 12 October against Ireland. A test highlight was playing against his cousin Sean Maitland of Scotland, whose mother is half Samoan.
In 2015 he played with Counties Manukau Steelers in the ITM Cup (Mitre 10 Cup) and in 2016 signed a contract with Waikato for two seasons. He also was a medical joker in 2016 for the Cardiff Blues. In 2018 he moved back to Auckland and played for Samoa. In 2019 he played club rugby with Ponsonby and helped the team win the Gallaher Shield, the award which the champion of the Auckland Rugby Football Union senior premier competition receives.
Pele met with Austin coach Brett Semmons at the Rugby World Cup according to the Samoan Observer and his visa for joining the Gilgronis was just received. He will be a valuable addition to the team in 2020.