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Rugby Transfer Rumours

Barrett to Move to Super Rugby Rival?

Beauden Barrett’s future has been under the spotlight for a while now, but could it take a surprise turn?



(Photo by Phil Walter/Getty Images)

All Black out-half Beauden Barrett could make a shock move from the Hurricanes to fellow Super Rugby franchise the Blues according to the NZ Herald.

The 28-year-old has been a long-term target for the Blues, he was even set to join them in 2016 until he re-signed with the Hurricanes, whom he has been with since 2011.

However, the Herald are reporting that he has remained on their radar and they hope to hold talks about a move north for the playmaker.

It is suspected that any deal would most likely be similar to that of Brodie Retallick and Sam Whitelock, both of whom will take sabbaticals in Japan before returning to New Zealand.

Only last month, Hurricanes head coach John Plumtree expressed his desire for Barrett to remain at the club and told Radio Sports D’Arcy that they had already started discussing the future.

“First prize for us is that he stays at the Hurricanes in some capacity. There might be a sabbatical involved or he might decide to go and play overseas. The chats that I’ve had with him have all been pretty positive around playing for New Zealand Rugby and his future in New Zealand Rugby, so I think we can probably wait for the rest,” he said.

It is believed that if the 73-capped All Black does make the switch to the Blues that he may only turn out for them come 2021 due to a break away from New Zealand.

The Herald asked the Blues for a comment on the matter to which chief executive of the franchise Michael Redman gave a simple reply.

“Our policy remains unchanged that we never comment on speculation around player or staff recruitment,” he said.

The other possibility for the two-time World Rugby Player of the Year is a move to Europe with reports claiming that French Top 14 teams are vying for his signature and willing to offer him a massive financial contract.

Barrett is the biggest name on the All Black list yet to declare his future intentions, however, if he does move to the Blues it would be a huge signing for a franchise that hasn’t made the Super Rugby play-offs in eight seasons.


Te’o Heading to Play in Super Rugby

England centre Ben Te’o has been heavily linked with a move away from the English Premiership and reports now claim he could be playing for a Super Rugby side next season



(Photo by Harry Trump/Getty Images)

England and Worcester Warriors centre Ben Te’o could make a move to Super Rugby side the Queensland Reds according to Australian outlet The Courier Mail.

The 32-year-old’s contract with the Gallagher Premiership side ends this summer and it appears very unlikely that he will remain on English shores next season.

There have already been reports suggesting he has offers from French and Japanese clubs, however, it is thought that Brad Thorn is keen to bring in the Auckland native to replace departing centre Samu Kerevi.

Kerevi is one of a number of high-profile Australian players in line to leave the country after the Rugby World Cup, with the centre set for a move to Japan.

The Reds ended their season in a disappointing fourth position in the Australian conference which meant they failed to make the play-offs for a sixth successive season, but Thorn wants to bring the Queensland side back into contention with Super Rugby’s top sides.

Te’o, who was named as part of Eddie Jones’ England training camp this week in preparation for the World Cup would bring a huge amount of experience to the Aussie outfit.

He has 18 caps for England and played for the British & Irish Lions during their 2017 tour of New Zealand as well as his club career. If they do manage to claim his signature, it would be a decent way to fill the void being left by Kerevi.

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Retallick Signs New Deal with a Catch

Brodie Retallick has signed a new deal with New Zealand Rugby but there is a twist in it



(Photo by Michael Bradley/Getty Images)

All Blacks and Chiefs lock Brodie Retallick has signed a new three-year deal with New Zealand Rugby however, he will take a two-year sabbatical within the deal.

The 2014 World Player of the Year has committed to New Zealand until 2023, but he will play in the Japanese Top League in 2020 and 2021 before returning to New Zealand.

The move allows the 28-year-old to spend more time with his family during the extended breaks of the Japanese league and will mean that he can stake his claim for a place in the All Blacks squad for the 2023 World Cup.

Speaking ahead of his move Retallick is excited by the prospect of playing in Japan and admits that one of the main reasons behind his decision is to lessen his workload.

“It has been a big decision to make, but I’m grateful to be able to have the opportunity to head over to Japan and experience not just the rugby but for my family and to be immersed in another culture. I’ve been playing high-octane rugby with the Chiefs and All Blacks since 2012, and while I’ve loved every minute of it and my workload has been managed well, I’ve decided to give my body a break from the New Zealand game, so that ultimately I can extend my career here,” he said.

The lock is also upbeat about his return in 2021, while he has also re-signed with Hawke’s Bay Rugby in his new deal.

“I’m lucky enough to work with a great group of people in both the Chiefs and All Blacks – they’re two teams I love to play for – so I look forward to returning in 2021. Even though I haven’t played for the ‘Mighty Magpies’ for a few years, I do want to acknowledge my connections to Hawke’s Bay and thank them as well for their support,” he added.

Retallick is one of several players that will leave New Zealand’s shores following the World Cup and his deal is similar to that of Sam Whitelock.

New Zealand Rugby chief executive Steve Tew is happy to let one of the country’s star performers take a brief break from the game and is looking forward to his return.

“As all rugby fans know, Brodie is a key player for the All Blacks and Chiefs, one of the leading players in world rugby and an absolute workhorse of a player. He puts his body on the line each and every time he plays and has still performed to the very highest standard. Brodie’s now into his eighth full season of professional rugby, so taking some time out from the New Zealand game will give him time to freshen up physically and mentally and spend more time with his family. We look forward to him returning to the New Zealand fold in 2021, refreshed and raring to go,” he said.

Retallick has been capped 75 times by his country and will be looking to add another World Cup to the one he won with the All Blacks in 2015 when his side head to Japan later this year.

He is set to return to the Chiefs starting line-up for their crunch clash with the Melbourne Rebels this weekend as they hope to secure a play-off spot, having last played for the franchise in round 8 of this season’s Super Rugby.

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Rugby Transfer Rumours

O’Gara Confirms Plan for the Future

Ronan O’Gara has finally announced what his next move is after months of speculation surrounding the Irish legend’s future



(Photo by Kai Schwoerer/Getty Images)

Ronan O’Gara has confirmed that he will take up the role of head coach with French side La Rochelle for the 2019/20 Top 14 season.

The former Ireland out-half will leave the Crusaders, where he has been their backs coach, at the end of the Super Rugby season.

O’Gara and the Crusaders have a chance to win a third successive Super Rugby title this year and he has paid tribute to franchise’s staff and players, admitting it is not easy to depart.

“My family and I have thoroughly enjoyed our time in Christchurch and were welcomed into the Crusaders family with open arms when we arrived in early 2018. This is one of the best rugby clubs in the world, and it certainly wasn’t an easy decision to move on from this team and their high-performance environment. I’m grateful to the Crusaders for the faith they’ve shown in me as a coach, and I’m incredibly fortunate to have worked alongside a world-class playing and management group for the last two seasons,” he said.

Although he set for the exit door and is excited about his new move, he has not completely shut out the possibility of a return to the Christchurch-based club in the future.

“While I see this move to La Rochelle as the next step in my coaching career and an exciting opportunity for my young family, I’d like to think, long-term, this is not necessarily the end of my time with the Crusaders. My focus now is helping to deliver a successful 2019 campaign with the side before my family and I return to France at the end of the season,” he added.

Crusaders head coach Scott Robertson is delighted for his colleague and is grateful for everything he has help the franchise achieve since his arrival.

“Ronan quickly endeared himself to our playing group when he joined us last season and has established great relationships with our backs. He stepped into this environment and really challenged our thinking early on, providing the fresh perspective we were after in our coaching group. We’ve seen a huge amount of personal growth in Ronan during his time here, he continues to be a great friend to me and he’s been an integral part of our success to date. On behalf of the Crusaders team, we wish Ronan and his family all the very best on their return to France,” he said.

Meanwhile the side’s CEO Colin Mansbridge added to Robertson’s tribute to O’Gara and is looking forward to the last couple of months with the coach before he heads back to France.

“We’ve been fortunate to have someone of Ronan’s calibre join our organisation for the past two seasons, and he has certainly added to the legacy of our club during his time here, imparting his knowledge of the game and immense international experience on our playing group. We look forward to celebrating the rest of the season with him and, come the end of our 2019 campaign, wish Ronan, Jess and family all the very best for their next chapter,” he said.

O’Gara was previously the assistant coach of Racing 92 in France, but this will be his first job leading a club and adds to his ever-growing CV.

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