Another All Black heads north

Highlanders and All Black prop, Clarke Dermody, has signed a two-and-a-half-year contract with London Irish, kicking in from November onwards.

This adds to what is amounting to be something of a crisis for New Zealand rugby generally and the Highlanders particularly.

The Highlanders have now lost their entire front row – Dermody (London Irish), Anton Oliver (to France) and Carl Hayman (Newcastle), while other key forwards such as Filipo Levi and Josh Blackie are also heading overseas (both to Japan).

Jimmy Cowan, scrum-half, is also expected to be furthering his career elsewhere, whilst valuable fly-half Nick Evans has been linked to a French move. Both players, like Dermody, are fringe All Blacks.

These players are all set to make their final appearance for the Highlanders on Saturday when they take on the Brumbies at home in Carisbrook, Dunedin.

Dermody told New Zealand newspaper the Southland Times that the timing was right for he and wife Sarah and their one-year-old son Carter to make the move offshore.

He said having to shift between Invercargill and Dunedin each rugby season (Dermody plays for the Highlanders in Dunedin and for Southlands in Invercargill) had also been a factor in seeking a more settled environment in the UK. But he also conceded the move would not be without its challenges.

“It is exciting but it’s going to be like shifting to a new school. I won’t know anyone until I start making a few new mates,” he said.

“Southland rugby’s been a huge part of my life and they’ve done a lot for me,” he said.

Dermody joins Aaron Mauger, Byron Kelleher, Chris Jack, Hayman, Oliver and Sam Tuitupou as confirmed All Blacks heading offshore after the World Cup. Luke McAlister is also set for a northwards move.


365 Digital

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. more information

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.