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Clarke next NZ 7s star

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Blues young gun Caleb Clarke picked for New Zealand Sevens

18-year-old Blues winger Caleb Clarke has been named in the New Zealand Sevens squad for the Sydney sevens.

The son of former All Black centre Eroni Clarke has been training with the Blues as part of their pre-season preparations, as part of their 2018 Super Rugby squad.

“We’ve worked closely with the Blues to have Caleb released to train with us and he is part of our plan to build depth heading into the Commonwealth Games,” Laidlaw said of Clarke.

“He’s a big, powerful winger and we are really excited about unleashing him.”

He was a standout performer as part of the New Zealand u20 side that captured the world title in Georgia last June. The Blues jumped to sign him for the 2018 season to make sure one of their best junior prospects was retained.

Coming through local high school Mount Albert Grammar School, Clarke co-captained his school to the national championship in 2016. He was part of the Blues under-18 side, the New Zealand secondary schools in 2015 and 2016 and the Blues development programmes for under-17, under-18 and under-20.

 

Clarke seems set to follow a similar path to fellow Blues teammate Rieko Ioane, who played for the national sevens side as a 17-year-old before having a breakout year in Super Rugby in 2017.

New Zealand Sevens squads for Sydney

Mens: Kurt Baker, Caleb Clarke, Scott Curry, Sam Dickson, Andrew Knewstubb, Vilimoni Koroi, Luke Masirewa, Tim Mikkelson, Sione Molia, Joe Ravouvou, Teddy Stanaway, Regan Ware, Joe Webber.

Womens: Shakira Baker, Michaela Blyde, Kelly Brazier, Gayle Broughton, Theresa Fitzpatrick, Sarah Goss, Tyla Nathan-Wong, Alena Saili, Terina Te Tamaki, Ruby Tui, Stacey Waaka, Niall Williams, Tenika Willison, Portia Woodman.

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Blues young gun Caleb Clarke picked for New Zealand Sevens