Ngatungane Punivai was the captain of the Reuben Thorne coached Christ College First XV in 2016 and a member of the NZ Secondary Schools team. The following year he was selected for the New Zealand Under 20s in the Oceania Rugby Championship, he was then called into the Under 20s Junior World Championship squad, playing in the 3rd/4th playoff. A big strong ball carrier with a wide range of skills he can play in the centres or on the wing.
After claiming two caps for the Crusaders in 2019 it was announced he would be switching to play for the Highlanders. Punivai scored his first try for the Highlanders against his former team, the Crusaders on the 4th of July 2020.
Ngane will look to build on his solid performances from the past two seasons and cement a starting spot in a talented Highlanders backline.