Highlanders have confirmed the signing of Japan back-rower Kazuki Himeno ahead of the 2021 Super Rugby season.
According to the club, the forward has penned a one year deal with the side and will return to Japan play for Toyota Verblitz after the deal.
“One of the Brave Blossoms best at the 2019 World Cup will turn out for the Highlanders in 2021. 26 year old, Kazuki Himeno, has signed a one-year agreement to be involved in super rugby before returning to play for Toyota Verblitz which has former All Black head coach Sir Steve Hansen as its Director of Rugby,” reads a statement by Highlanders.
Speaking after signing a deal with the side, Himeno said: “I thought it was necessary for me now to leave the environment of my comfortable Japan and play from scratch.”s and
Highlanders assistant coach believes Himeno will be suited the Highlanders style of play.
“ He’s a very powerful ball carrier and can play a number of positions in the back row and should flourish under the roof at Forsyth Barr Stadium.”
Himeno will join the squad at the start of the preseason in early January 2021. He is the second loose forward to be added to the 2021 roster joining the Crusaders Billy Harmon.