Health Care

Sopoaga lured by Wasps deal

Sopoaga lured by Wasps deal”

All Black first five-eighth Lima Sopoaga is leaving New Zealand to play in England, reports suggest.

Capped 16 times for the All Blacks, Highlanders No 10 Sopoaga has signed a two-and-a-half year deal with high profile London club Wasps, The Times newspaper said.

All Blacks first-five Lima Sopoaga.

The 16-Test capped global will link up with his new teammates at the end of the 2018 season, opening the door for Canterbury first-five Richie Mo'unga for further All Blacks honours.

Lima Sopoaga right and Aaron Smith celebrate winning the Super Rugby title with the Highlanders in 2015
SPORT Lima Sopoaga right and Aaron Smith celebrate winning the Super Rugby title with the Highlanders in 2015

The move will come as a blow to the All Blacks as they ramp up their preparations for the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan, although Richie Mo'unga looks likely to add to his test experience in the coming season.

The 26-year-old's arrival next season leaves Cipriani with a huge decision to make.

Having been on the fringes of the All Blacks squad, Sopoaga has amassed only 16 worldwide caps in the past two-and-a-half years.

Sopoaga's exit after one final Super Rugby campaign with the Highlanders, the team he helped clinch its maiden title in 2015, shows the lure of the All Black jersey is not always enough.

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