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TJ Perenara turns down rugby league switch to return to New Zealand and Hurricanes

All-Black TJ Perenara has ended speculation around a surprise switch to Rugby League, by re-signi...

Neil Treacy
Neil Treacy

11:00 10 May 2021



All-Black TJ Perenara has ended speculation around a surprise switch to Rugby League, by re-signing with New Zealand rugby and the Hurricanes on a two-year-deal.

The 29-year-old had been on a sabbatical this season with NTT DoCoMo Red Hurricanes in Japan’s Top League, with that campaign coming to an end recently with a quarter final defeat.

Scrumhalf Perenara had been linked with a surprise switch of codes to rugby league and Australian NRL side Sydney Roosters, before confirming his decision to return to New Zealand and his previous club Hurricanes for next season.

Confirming the news on social media, TJ Perenara said: "My wife and I have decided to come back to the Hurricanes and New Zealand Rugby for the next two and a half years. We’re really excited at the journey.

"Really looking forward to seeing everyone back home and thanks to the Hurricanes and New Zealand Rugby for allowing me the opportunity to come home and do what I love."

TJ Perenara rejects NRL deal to return to New Zealand

Chris Lendrum, NZR’s General Manager Professional Rugby & Performance, said he always wanted to bring the scrumhalf back to the All Blacks following his sting abroad.

"When TJ left for his short stint in Japan we said we’d welcome him home, so we’re delighted that he has signed a contract with us through to 2023.  He’s been part of New Zealand rugby for more than a decade and I’m sure his Japanese experience has grown him as a person.  We look forward to seeing him on his return."

While playing second-fiddle to Aaron Smith for much of his career, the skillful scrumhalf has won 69 caps for the All Blacks since making his debut in 2014, winning a World Cup title in England in 2015.

On his return to the Hurricanes next season he will be adding to his record 140 appearances for the Super Rugby franchise.

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