Weepu staying in New Zealand until 2010


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All Blacks halfback Piri Weepu has extended his New Zealand Rugby Union contract for a further two years to 2010.

24-year-old Weepu has played 22 Tests for the All Blacks since making his debut against Wales in Cardiff in 2004, the same year he made his Rebel Sport Super 14 debut for the Hurricanes. He has played 56 games for the franchise.

At provincial level, Weepu made his debut for Wellington in 2003 and has since played 41 games for the province.

In June Weepu was one of the leading players for New Zealand Maori in the team’s unbeaten and successful IRB Pacific Nations Cup campaign.

NZRU General Manager of Professional Rugby, Neil Sorensen, said Weepu’s re-signing was significant for the NZRU.

‘Piri is an outstanding rugby player and to have him play in New Zealand is fantastic for us. He has represented New Zealand at the highest level and he has been an influential player for his province and franchise as well. We are delighted that rugby will continue to benefit from his talent and experience,’ Sorensen said.

Wellington RFU Chief Executive Greg Peters said Weepu is a class player.’Piri is one of the most talented players in New Zealand rugby and has a major role to play with both the Hurricanes and the Vodafone Wellington Lions.

‘At the age of just 24, he has already earned an astonishing 56 caps for the Hurricanes, 41 for the Vodafone Wellington Lions and 22 for the All Blacks, with plenty more to come.

‘He is developing into a highly respected leader both on and off the field and we’re delighted that he has chosen to remain playing his rugby in Wellington.’

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