Melbourne - The Melbourne Rebels on Monday announced the signing of former All Black back rower Adam Thomson for the 2016 Super Rugby season.
Thomson, 33, will bring a wealth of experience to Melbourne, having made 83 Super Rugby appearances for the Highlanders and Reds as well as winning the 2011 Rugby World Cup with the All Blacks among 31 appearances for his country (29 Tests).
Capable of playing anywhere in the loose trio, Thomson played alongside compatriot Tamati Ellison for both the Highlanders and All Blacks, while he worked with Rebels assistant coach Zane Hilton during their time together at Canon Eagles in Japan’s Top League. Thomson is a try-scoring back rower, having crossed 21 times at Super Rugby level.
Rebels head coach Tony McGahan said he was delighted to be able to add a player of Thomson’s pedigree to his squad.
“Adam will bring a great deal of experience, ability and dynamism to our squad,” McGahan told the Rebels’ official website.
“He has proven himself to be one of the top loose forwards in the Southern Hemisphere over a sustained period, and he’ll add a lot to our rugby programme when he arrives in Melbourne.”
For Thomson himself, the opportunity to join a young team on the rise was one he simply couldn’t turn down.
“At this stage of my career, I wanted to continue to play rugby at a high level and it was important to be in an environment that best fits my needs, that I feel can get the best out of me and where I believe I can contribute the most,” Thomson explained.
“Having played against the Rebels for a number of years, I’ve seen some real development; the style they play and the direction the club’s heading is exciting. I think my game will fit well with the Rebels and allow me to play some quality football, which I am still very much driven to do.”