33 players have been selected from the 190 professional player by five New Zealand Super Rugby franchises to take part in the 2019 season.
The Chiefs, Wellington, Blues, Crusaders, and Highlanders have named their 38-men squads after they confirmed the last of the remaining places on their line-ups. Along with well-known names, the list of players include seven sets of brothers, and 33 names that are new to the Super Rugby scene, which also includes 21 from the U20 development programme from this year – showing that there is immense young talent entering the professional scene.
The new contracts for super rugby are as follows:
Blues – Ezekiel Lindenmuth, Karl Tu’inukuafe, Jacob Pierce, Tom Robinson, Marcel Renata, Hoskints Sotutu, Harry Plummer, and Tanielu Tele’a.
Crusaders – Leicester Faingaanuku, Whetu Doubles, Brett Cameron, Ngane Punavai, and Harrison Allan.
Chiefs – Reuben O’Neill, Laghlan McWhannell, Pita Gus Sowakulu, Jack Debreczeni, Tumua Manu, Etene Nanai-Seturo, and Bailyn Sullivan.
Hurricans – Liam Mitchell, Du Plessis Kirifi, Fraser Armstrong, Richard Judd, Billy Proctor, and Salesi Rayasi.
Highlanders – Ayden Johnstone, Sef Fa’agase, Josh Iosefa Scott, Marino Mickaele Tu’u, Ray Niuia, Jack Whetton, and Folau Fakatava
Many of the players from the U20 development program also played in 2018/s U20 World Championships. Christ Lendrum, the New Zealand Rugby Head of Professional Rugby congratulated all 190 players that have been confirmed to their respective clubs for next year’s season. All new players will be required to attend an induction over two days at New Zealand rugby before heading over to their clubs at the end of November.
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