Ardie Savea keen to test himself in Japan Rugby League One

Ardie Savea has joined Kobelco Kobe Steelers on a one-year deal
Ardie Savea has joined Kobelco Kobe Steelers on a one-year deal

All Blacks loose forward Ardie Savea said he is keen to test himself in the upcoming Japan Rugby League One season.

Savea, who was named the World Rugby Player of the Year has signed a one-year deal with Kobelco Kobe Steelers where he will join his New Zealand teammate Brodie Retallick.

With the competition kicking off on 9th December, the 30-year-old expressed his excitement to test himself on what will be his debut in the Japanese competition.

“There’s been a lot of positive things from the boys that have been coming into the country around the competition,” said the 30-year-old Savea.

“As a player that’s playing in New Zealand, that excites you to come here and give it a crack and try something new.

“You look at the competition and I guess the talent that’s across all teams is pretty special.”

Apart from Savea and Retallick, New Zealand skipper Sam Cane, Beauden Barrett and Richie Mo'unga will also be playing in the Rugby League One. Even though Savea and Cane will not miss any international matches for the All Blacks, the former Hurricanes back-row is hoping to help Kobe achieve success with his time with the club.

“I like to challenge myself and apply myself,” he said.

“My aspiration here is to come to Kobe and give myself to the culture and to the club, to my team-mates and hopefully try to win a championship.”