Highlanders: Hore also gets the boot
Tue, 17 Sep 2013 07:47
All Black 'unemployment' grows
Andrew Hore joined Ma'a Nonu Tuesday as an All Black without a Super Rugby home, fuelling speculation he is on the verge of retirement.
The Highlanders confirmed they have not re-signed Hore for the 2014 season, and said they wished the 79-Test All Blacks hooker well "with whatever future endeavours he undertakes".
The 35-year-old has not made any statement about his future, but All Black coach Steve Hansen indicated retirement was close when he named Dane Coles to start at hooker against the Springboks last Saturday.
Hansen said Coles was seen as part of the All Blacks squad being groomed for the 2015 World Cup.
"I do not see Horey being there and I don't think he sees himself being there," Hansen said.
Hore played 29 games for the Highlanders over two seasons, and captained the team 13 times.
He earlier played 106 Super Rugby games for the Hurricanes.
Highlanders coach Jamie Joseph said the franchise is now looking towards the future with Liam Coltman and Brayden Mitchell as its hooking options.
"Horey's contribution to New Zealand has been enormous and the fact that he is still playing at the very top level at 35 years of age is testament to his durability and skill as a player," Joseph said.
The full Highlanders squad will be announced in November.
* Meanwhile, all five New Zealand franchises have shut the door on Nonu, who is now believed to be looking at the option of playing in France.
Nonu, who has played 82 Tests, has developed a reputation as a player unable to produce his Test form at Super Rugby level.
Nonu's lengthy foul play track record - he has been carded five times this year alone - is also scaring off potential employers.
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