Messam to play a season in Japan after world cup

New Zealand All Blacks and Chiefs flanker Liam Messam has agreed to play a season in Japan after this year’s Rugby World cup according to reports.

While Messam has signed to play in Japan during the off-season he is expected to return to New Zealand in 2016 and still wants to play a part in the 2016 Olympic Sevens.

Messam made his name in Sevens and if he has been given permission by NZ Rugby so take a sabbatical it could mean that he is part of NS Sevens boss Gordon Tietjens’ plans for the Olympics.

Neither the Chiefs, New Zealand Rugby nor Messam’s agent Kent Hale would confirm which Japanese club the flanker will play for but he has been linked to Toshiba who also have current Chiefs No 8 Michael Leitch on their books.

Chiefs chief executive Andrew Flexman has confirmed that Messam and Sonny Bill Williams have both indicated that they want to play Sevens rugby as well as Super Rugby next year.

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