The Western Force have re-signed former All Blacks duo Richard Kahui and Jeremy Thrush for the 2021 Super Rugby AU season. Kahui won the World Cup with New Zealand in 2011 and scored ten tries in his 17 appearances for the All Blacks while 35-year-old lock Thrush won a dozen caps and scored twice in his international career.
Kahui, the 35-year-old centre, said he was excited to go on for another year in Western Australia. The Force were winless in this year’s Super Rugby AU but Kahui is confident of a future upturn in fortunes.
“Some of the signings we’ve made have been massive,” he said. “There are some big names of international rugby and it’s great for Western Force supporters. All the cattle’s there now and we’ve got the ingredients for a big campaign.”
In July, prior to the start of Super Rugby AU, Kahui told RugbyPass: “There are quite a lot of young guys in this team that have played Rapid Rugby and age-group rugby here in Australia but haven’t played any Super, so it’s quite a cool group because everyone’s really eager to learn and everyone’s really excited.
“I noticed that, when I came into the group, everyone was fizzing to be back in Super Rugby and to have that opportunity.
? All Blacks duo confirmed! ???
— Western Force (@westernforce) October 14, 2020
“I remember what it was like as a young guy myself, being asked to play Super Rugby and just how inspiring it is and how it makes you feel to be out there, playing a competition that is one of the best in the world. It’s really nice to be around that energy again and it’s sort of rubbing off on me and I’m starting to feel a little bit younger than I am.”
Former Ireland international Rob Kearney is one of the newly signed ‘cattle’ Kahui referred to. The full-back joined Western Force last month just five days after he announced his long stint at Leinster was finally over.
“I’m delighted to be joining the Western Force for their upcoming season and excited to play with such an ambitious club who are looking to improve on this year’s campaign,” said 34-year-old Kearney on the Force website at the time.
“I hope to add value both on and off the field that complements the high ambition of the club. I’m particularly excited to immerse myself in a new performance environment and to play both with and against some of the best players and teams in the southern hemisphere.
Down to the wire https://t.co/QTgpFjOmDc
— RugbyPass (@RugbyPass) October 14, 2020
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