Ex-All Black Toeava to leave Clermont


Paris (AFP)

Rugby World Cup winner Isaia Toeava will leave French Top 14 club Clermont at the end of the season, the former New Zealand full-back said on Wednesday.

Toeava, 34, who lifted the Webb Ellis trophy with the All Blacks in 2011, has scored 11 tries in 64 appearances since heading to the Stade Marcel-Michelin four years ago and said he was told by coach Franck Azema last weekend the outfit had chosen against extending his contract.

"I had a meeting with Franck on Sunday after the game and unfortunately for me my time is over at Clermont so this is my last year in Clermont," he told AFP.

"I'm just going to try and enjoy it and hopefully we can put in some solid performances and hopefully we can win the championship before I leave the club. My future at Clermont is finished," he added.

The ex-Blues playmaker, who also has had spells with Japanese Top League outfits, said he would be open to continuing his career.

"It's something I have to talk to my family about especially my wife," he said.

"Before I make the decision I have to talk to them. France has a nice culture, I enjoy it here, we will just have to see what the family,"

With Toeava departing and England international Nick Abendanon also set for the exit, newspaper Midi Olympique reported on Wednesday that Clermont had signed Japan winger Kotaro Matsushima, a stand-out performer at last year's Rugby World Cup, as a replacement in the back three.

Clermont travel to Harlequins this weekend and a victory in London could clinch a home quarter-final tie in the European Champions Cup.