Former New Zealand international Ben Smith has played down rumours of returning to his former side Highlanders ahead of the Super Rugby Aotearoa competition.
Smith previously played for Highlanders between 2009 and 2019 but decided to move to French club Pau following his retirement from international rugby that came with the World Cup last year in Japan.
His stint with the French club was cut short by the pandemic coronavirus which raised speculations of the 33-year-old linking up with Highlanders for the upcoming domestic competition that kicks-off on 13th June.
However, Smith on his Instagram post had confirmed that he will not be featuring in the Super Rugby Aotearoa competition.
“Super Rugby Aotearoa like a great concept,” the post said.
“I’m looking forward to supporting the Highlanders and watching them give it a crack. I’m not sure where the speculation has come from but I won’t be playing in this year’s competition.
“I’m looking forward to getting alongside my club side in Green Island and getting back to grassroots where it all started.”