Rieko Ioane re-signs with Blues, NZR through to end of 2023

October 19, 2022
Rieko Ioane dives under the posts for the All Blacks' third try against Argentina on Saturday night.

The All Blacks have secured another crucial piece of their squad through to the end of the current Rugby World Cup cycle with Rieko Ioane re-signing with New Zealand Rugby and the Blues until the end of 2023.

NZR confirmed this morning the 56-Test midfielder was staying in Aotearoa with an eye on earning selection for next year's tournament in France.

"I’m really excited to be signing through until 2023," said Ioane.

"My time with the Blues has been awesome. I love the turnaround we’ve had and I’m keen to continue building on what we have done as a team.

"With the All Blacks, I feel as though we have started something special. I’m looking forward to a huge Northern Tour and putting in the work to get us in good shape for next year."

After starting his international career on the wings, Ioane has grinded his way to his preferred position in the midfield where his strong running game has made him All Blacks coach Ian Foster's first-string option at No.13.

Rieko Ioane is back after a hamstring strain.

Foster was in charge of the backs as an assistant when Ioane earned his first selection in 2016 and has witnessed immense growth in him as a player and a person.

“Rieko is a young man with a massive amount of international experience," Foster said.

"So to have his commitment through till the end of the World Cup is pleasing for us. And hopefully for longer after that."

Blues coach Leon MacDonald added Ioane's recommitment was also a big deal for them after making the Super Rugby Pacific final this year.

"We’re looking forward to another big season for Rieko, he’s playing some of the best rugby of his career,” said MacDonald.

"Rieko has been with the Blues since he was a teenager, he’s been through our system and is part of our Blues family, so to have him contracted again is great news.

"He is a leader on and off the field, and is now in a position to pass on his knowledge and experience to our younger squad members. We are looking forward to him continuing to be a world-class centre for the club."

Ioane's signing comes after fellow fan favourite Ardie Savea confirmed he was staying until the end of 2023 as well before he heads to Japan on a rugby sabbatical in 2024.


More Stories