INJURY-PLAGUED former Worcester Warriors forward Zac Xiourouppa is “not far away” from returning to action as he seeks a fresh start with Birmingham Moseley.

Xiourouppa made his Warriors debut at Enisei-STM in October 2016 when he was part of a young side that featured Josh Adams, Jack Singleton and Andrew Kitchener.

But while the trio’s careers have gone from strength to strength Xiourouppa has been dogged by injuries.

Two years after making his first-team bow Xiourouppa was named in the starting line-up for Warriors’ Premiership Cup clash at Saracens last November.

However, the luckless back rower lasted just six minutes before sustaining anterior cruciate knee ligament damage.

It turned out to be Xiourouppa’s final outing in blue and gold as he was released by the Gallagher Premiership club at the end of the season.

The 21-year-old has decided to step down two levels to join fellow ex-Warriors aces Jonny Arr, Mason Tonks and Ravai Fatiaki at National One side Moseley.

Director of rugby Adam Balding, another former Warriors player, said Xiourouppa was looking in “fantastic shape” following his arrival and was keen to get his career back on track.

“Of course this can be (a fresh start),” Balding said.

“I can sympathise with Zac.

“Every player will go through their fair share of injuries.

“It is just very unfortunate for Zac as he has had his right at the start of his career.

“Hopefully he can get that out of the way and look forward to many good years playing for Moseley and doing what he does best.

“We are excited to be working with him and will do everything we can to speed up his recovery and get him out on the field.”

Xiourouppa represented England at age-group level, captaining the under 17s and under 18s, and was once deemed “the number one openside flanker in the country” according to Warriors boss Alan Solomons.

“Zac is in fantastic shape,” Balding said.

“I have met him a couple of times and he carries himself really well.

“To have him come into Moseley will only grow the professional environment that we are looking for.

"We knew that Zac had been unfortunate with injuries but he is not far away from being fit which is great news."

Xiourouppa is set to miss Mose’s pre-season games as he continues his recovery and Balding admits he will face a battle for a starting spot when he comes back.

“The back row is a very strong area at Moseley,” Balding said.

“We have got Buster Lawrence, Jacques Le Roux, Morgan Dawes, Michael Stephens and Harry Mahoney.

“Danny Wright and Aaron Cross can also play in the back row.

“But I want competition for places.”

Tonks, 21, joined Warriors’ academy last October but failed to make a senior appearance. The wing has now made the move to Moseley.

“Mason has had a great pre-season so all he needs to do now is play a few games,” Balding added.

“Once he has done that, I am pretty sure he will get himself into a rich vein a form.

“Most of these players just need an opportunity.

“I have been really impressed with all of them and am looking forward to seeing them on the pitch.”