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'The fastest man in New Zealand' returns to wreak havoc on old team

By Online Editors

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The Brumbies face a monumental task against the Chiefs on Saturday, where they plan to break a Super Rugby hoodoo by unleashing a former star against the competition leaders.


The Australian conference frontrunners are winless in Hamilton since 2007 and haven’t posted a Super Rugby victory anywhere in New Zealand since 2014.

Tevita Kuridrani, Scott Sio and Lachy McCaffrey are the only current players to have won across the ditch in Brumbies colours.

In a bid to snap that drought former Chiefs flyer and current Brumbies winger Toni Pulu is expected to make his return from injury off the bench in Hamilton.

Wallabies coach and former Chiefs mentor Dave Rennie once dubbed Pulu the fastest man in New Zealand, but his career has been slowed by injuries.

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The 31-year-old has played just 23 Super Rugby matches in the past five years, but Pulu said he’s ready to return against his mates this week.

“I was injured last year so it’s going to be quite emotional going back because that’s where things started for me,” he said.

“I still keep in touch with most of the boys and we share a few laughs, but there’s no friends going over there.


“They’re a quality side but we’ve done enough this week to prepare for that.”

Pulu said his goals this season are to break back into the Brumbies starting side – he started both finals on the left wing last season – and remain healthy.

“Injuries have been the downfall of my career but hopefully I can stay injury-free this season,” Pulu said.

“It’s tough with the young guys stepping up this year so if I get my opportunity I really want to take it.

“If I get the chance to put the jersey on this week I’ll definitely be putting put my best foot forward.”

The Brumbies were expected to name a full-strength side but confirmation on Wednesday that some players and staff had been affected by a mumps outbreak could revise those plans.


WATCH: Highlanders coach Aaron Mauger is excited ahead of his side’s southern derby with the Crusaders.

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