Highlanders winger Naholo set to join Clermont

Highlanders winger Waisake Naholo has all but signed with French Top 14 Rugby club Clermont and will leave for the Northern Hemisphere at the end of the season.

Naholo has scored six tries in seven games for the Highlanders and in many ways has replaced Malakai Fekitoa as the Dunedin side’s excitement player.

Highlanders general manager Roger Clark says that they have tried to keep Naholo in Dunedin my making him a big offer to stay which was later increased but it was still not enough.

“We made him what we thought was a good offer. But it is never going to be enough when you are up against overseas clubs,” Clark told the Otago Daily Times.

“We put our best foot forward but we were not able to keep him here. That is disappointing but that is part of our game at the moment.”

“You get these guys down here and they come through and grow into good players. You hope to get a good few years out of them and that is what we have done with someone like Nasi (Manu). We have had great value out of him.”

“Waisake has been for us what Malakai (Fekitoa) was last year and it is a shame we can’t keep him here.”

The most that a Super rugby player in New Zealand can earn is $180,000 a season but that can be supplemented with third party deals. This does however still pale in comparison to what the French clubs can offer.

Earlier in the season the loss of Naholo would not have been that bad for the Highlanders as they had Richard Buckman and Patrick Osborne but Buckman was injured which opened the door for Naholo who has made the most of his game time.

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Your email address will not be published.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.