Delve, Robinson & Phipps to leave Melbourne Rebels

The Rebels have announced that two of their foundation internationals – Gareth Delve and Ged Robinson as well as Nick Phipps and Richard Kingi will leave the Melbourne club at the end of this Super Rugby season.

Robinson and Delve will join Phipps and Wallaby tourist Kingi who confirmed he will leave Australian Rugby to play for French glamour Club, Stade Francais, along with James King who also heads abroad.

With over 80 Super Rugby Caps between them, the Welsh international and Junior All Black will part the Club with a lasting legacy.

Gareth won the Club’s ‘Pursuit of Excellence Medal’ in 2012 and Ged claimed the ‘Spirit of Weary Dunlop Medal’ in his rookie season.

“The Rebels were very grateful that the ARU allowed special dispensation for Ged and Gareth to remain at the Club beyond their two year window, as part of the international marquee rulings,” said Rebels CEO, Rob Clarke.

Rebels Head Coach Damien Hill echoed similar sentiments about the foundation Rebels.

“(Gareth) He has won some prominent awards in his time here at the Rebels and will be remembered as one of the greatest players to wear the 5 Stars.

“That is what this Club has been able to provide. The Rebels have given Delvey the opportunity to play for Wales again. It has given Ged valuable Super Rugby experience, to return and challenge himself to fulfill a lifelong dream of becoming an All Black.”

“Adding to this, what the Rebels have given our local players like Phipps, Vuna, Pyle, Neville and Inman who have all become a part of the Wallabies set up since the Rebels began.

“Knowing them both, they will want to leave this Club winners and they have plenty more to play for, with the Lions match in June, and three local derbies against teams we have not beaten.”

The in-form Robinson spoke of his love for the Club and the city of Melbourne, with his ambition to play for his country the contributing factor in returning home to New Zealand.

“It is a boyhood dream to play for the All Blacks, so I want to go back and give it a crack and put my name in the hat,” Robinson said.

“Richard (Kingi)is a very special player, his versatility is like no other in Australian Rugby,” said Clarke.

“He has been part of many great moments in this Club’s short history and we were all very disappointed to see his season cut short through injury last month.”

“While James King has not taken the field for the Rebels this season, he has really developed over the past two years, leading the way for the Rebel Rising and in the Dewar Shield Competition.

“Off the field, James has had a massive impact in the community here in Victoria, in particular with the Schoolboys. His contribution off the field is amongst the highest at the Club.”

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