'Unwanted' Rutledge answers SOS

Mon, 18 Mar 2013 08:19
Large jason rutledge2 Large neil brew Large jason rutledge

Unwanted at the start of the season and 'loaned' to the Hurricanes just a week ago, hooker Jason Rutledge has become one of two veterans recalled by the Highlanders.

Unwanted at the start of the season and 'loaned' to the Hurricanes just a week ago, hooker Jason Rutledge has become one of two veterans recalled by the Highlanders.

The 35-year-old Southland hooker, Rutledge, and 34-year-old former Otago midfield back Neil Brew joined the Highlanders squad in Dunedin on Monday.

The franchise confirmed, in a statement, that Rutledge and Brew joined the Highlanders squad as injury cover for the next four to six weeks.

Rutledge, who made his debut for the Highlanders in 2004 and then after playing just two games did not return to the Highlanders until 2009 season, was axed from the Highlanders squad this season - with the 34-year-old Andrew Hore (as captain) and Rutledge's 24-year-old Southland teammate Brayden Mitchell were preferred.

Both Hore and Mitchell suffered injuries in the 19-23 loss to the Hurricanes last week, with Rutledge unused but part of the Hurricanes' wider squad.

Hore damaged rib cartilage early in the game against the Hurricanes, and Mitchell's collarbone was dislocated. It is believed they could both be sidelined for up to a six weeks.

Liam Coltman, a member of the wider training group of the Highlanders in 2011 but unused, is now the only hooker left standing in the squad - hence the recall of the popular and durable Rutledge.

While the recall of Rutledge is still understandable, given the injury situation, but the return of Brew is a genuine bolt from the blue.

He has not featured in the southern franchise in these parts since 2006, when he played the last of his 34 games for the Highlanders.

Brew, who also played for New Zealand Maori, spent a couple of seasons in England, playing for Bristol, and then went to Japan.

Brew provides cover for Tamati Ellison (shoulder injury, two to three months before his return) and Shaun Treeby (hamstring, four to six weeks).

All Black centre Ma'a Nonu (knee) is also expected to be available to play the Chiefs in Hamilton on Friday.

No.8 Nasi Manu (foot, three to four months) is the other long-term casualty in the Highlanders, whose first few weeks in what was hoped to be a successful campaign have been extremely disappointing.

Hosea Gear is the Highlanders' vice-captain, but veteran lock Brad Thorn assumed the captaincy when Hore left the field against the Hurricanes, and it may be that Thorn gets the job on a semi-permanent basis.

Source: Otago Daily Times

There are currently no matches being played
FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 02 September 2016
Boland v Pumas 13h00 Wellington
Blue Bulls v Golden Lions 17h00 Pretoria
Leinster v Treviso 18h35 RDS Arena
Ulster v Dragons 18h35 Kingspan Stadium
Ospreys v Zebre 18h35 Liberty Stadium
Gloucester v Leicester Tigers 18h45 Kingsholm
Newcastle Falcons v Sale Sharks 19h00 Kingston Park
Sat, 03 September 2016
Saracens v Worcester Warriors 13h00 Twickenham Stadium
Free State Cheetahs v EP Kings 13h00 Bloemfontein
Scarlets v Munster 14h00 Parc y Scarlets
Northampton Saints v Bath 14h30 Franklin's Gardens
Western Province v Sharks 15h10 Cape Town
Harlequins v Bristol 15h30 Twickenham Stadium
Connacht v Glasgow Warriors 16h15 Sportsground
Cardiff Blues v Edinburgh 18h35 BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park
Sun, 04 September 2016
Wasps v Exeter Chiefs 14h00 Ricoh Arena
SUPER RUGBY
MORE LOGS
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Brumbies 15 10 0 5 43
Waratahs 15 8 0 7 40
Rebels 15 7 0 8 31
Reds 15 3 1 11 17
Force 15 2 0 13 13
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Hurricanes 15 11 0 4 53
Highlanders 15 11 0 4 52
Chiefs 15 11 0 4 51
Crusaders 15 11 0 4 50
Blues 15 8 1 6 39
Pool SA1
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 15 10 1 4 51
Bulls 15 9 1 5 42
Cheetahs 15 4 0 11 21
Sunwolves 15 1 1 13 9
Pool SA2
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 14 11 0 3 52
Sharks 15 9 1 5 43
Jaguares 14 3 0 11 18
Kings 15 2 0 13 9