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'Huge attacking threat': Highlanders' Tomkinson signs for Dragons

By Kim Ekin
(Photo by Dianne Manson/Getty Images)

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URC strugglers Dragons have confirmed the signing of Super Rugby Pacific back Sio Tomkinson from the Highlanders in New Zealand for the start of the 2022/23 campaign. The 25-year-old, who operates at centre or wing, is known for his hard-tackling and range of skills.

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“We are really pleased that Sio will be a Dragon from next season,” said Dragons director of rugby Dean Ryan. “This is a fantastic opportunity for us to bring over a player from the southern hemisphere with a huge attacking threat and strike power.

Sio has impressed throughout his time in Super Rugby and he is now excited about a new chapter and making a big impact with us. We look forward to welcoming Sio and his family to Wales and to him making Rodney Parade his new home.”

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The Dunedin-born Tomkinson made his name with Otago before making his Highlanders debut in 2017. He has gone on to make 43 appearances for them, scoring 14 tries, but is yet to feature in the new Super Rugby Pacific competition as he continues to rehab a foot injury sustained in the 2021 NPC final with Otago.

Tomkinson has previously represented New Zealand Schools and New Zealand U20s, scoring two tries in five games at the 2016 Junior World Championship in England. “I’m looking forward to heading over to Wales later in the year to join up with the Dragons,” he said.

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“Since leaving school, I have been fortunate to be involved in professional rugby and played for two New Zealand teams: The Highlanders and Otago. I have made some great friends and both teams mean a lot to me, but it’s time for a new chapter and I’m excited about taking this opportunity at the Dragons.

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“Dean Ryan has spoken to me about the direction the team is moving, and I want to be a part of this. I look forward to travelling to Newport later in 2022 to connect with the coaches, players, and the loyal supporters of the Dragons.”

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