Highlanders' Tamati Ellison to return to Japan

Last updated 18:49 10/05/2013
Tamati Ellison
Fairfax NZ
HEADING OFF: Tamati Ellison has no regrets about his decision to head to Japan.

Related Links

Mose Tuiali'i back in frame for Highlanders Southern Kings promising to test Highlanders Highlanders finally strike form ahead of SA trip Highlanders down Sharks for first win of season Tamati Ellison return softens Nonu injury blow Highlanders lose Ellison for most of season

Relevant offers

All Blacks

All Blacks captain Kieran Read opens up to Andy Ellis about his gardening passion Phil Gifford: Welcome to the jungle, Lions Rejuvenated All Blacks captain Kieran Read ready to re-sign and go Lion hunting All Blacks to turn out for Crusaders and Blues against British and Irish Lions Highlanders back embattled Aaron Smith to launch his rugby renaissance down south Love for Sione Lauaki as ex-All Black mourned by hundreds at Auckland service Resurgent Crotty denies Bristol approach as he surveys crowded All Blacks midfield South African cricketers link up with Sonny Bill Williams ahead of facing Black Caps Pat Lam fires up at Steve Hansen's description of him as as 'ex-New Zealander' All Blacks midfielder Ryan Crotty "hasn't heard anything" about potential deal with Bristol

The All Blacks' midfield crisis has deepened with Highlander Tamati Ellison set to return to the Japanese club scene.

Ellison will rejoin the Japanese club side Ricoh at the end of the current Super Rugby season.

Persuaded back to New Zealand by Highlanders coach Jamie Joseph, Ellison did enough to earn a recall to the All Blacks squad last year though he had limited opportunities.

He has also endured a wretched run with injuries and has only just returned to action with the Highlanders, making a handy contribution in last week's maiden win of the season over the Sharks.

Ellison would be available for the June internationals against Ireland but is no longer a long-term option.

Clearly at 30, Ellison has decided to cash in on another crack at the lucrative Japanese scene.

He has played just four tests in a stuttering international career that started in 2009. Ironically, his stocks have never been higher than they are right now, with everything that is swirling round him in his positions of centre or second-five.

With Sonny Bill Williams long departed, Ma' Nonu injured and sorely out of form, Richard Kahui's future clouded by shoulder surgery and a likewise move to Japan, Rene Ranger mulling over a move to France, and senior centre Conrad Smith battling a head injury and also pondering the need for a break, All Blacks coach Steve Hansen has plenty on his plate to fill the midfield.

Ad Feedback

- Fairfax Media

Special offers
Opinion poll

Who was the best-performed All Blacks forward on the northern tour?

Dane Coles

Nathan Harris

Keven Mealamu

Wyatt Crockett

Charlie Faumuina

Ben Franks

Owen Franks

Joe Moody

Brodie Retallick

Luke Romano

Jeremy Thrush

Patrick Tuipulotu

Sam Whitelock

Sam Cane

Jerome Kaino

Richie McCaw

Liam Messam

Kieran Read

Vitor Vito

Vote Result

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content