Wellington - Former All Black lock Brad Thorn is coming out of retirement to play for Queensland Country in this month’s National Rugby Championship.
The 41-year-old Thorn retired from professional rugby in mid-2015. He played 59 Tests for New Zealand and was part of their World Cup winning squad in 2011, when they beat France in the final.
Thorn has been an assistant coach with the Reds and under-20s team, but is expected to be named in Queensland Country’s playing squad for 2016 next week, where he will be a player-coach.
Thorn's vast experience will be welcomed since Rob Simmons is expected to miss the biggest part of the tournament due to international duty.
In an interview with foxsports.com.au earlier this year, Thorn said he only retired because he thought that's what 40-year-olds do.
"I didn't actually retire because of my body," Thorn said.
"I retired because it seemed like I should - I turned 40. If you had of put the number 32 next to my name I would have signed another two-year contract.
"My body feels good. And I've had a few contacts from clubs about playing overseas, and I sort of say to them 'that would be fun' because I just love playing, but this is my focus now and it's good to have the family back here, and it's sort of the long-term plan and not popping around everywhere."
Queensland's first game in the national championship is against the Canberra Vikings on August 27.