All Blacks legend Ma'a Nonu 'back for another year' of rugby at age 41

All Blacks legend Ma'a Nonu 'back for another year' of rugby at age 41

Double Rugby World Cup-winning All Blacks legend Ma'a Nonu has signed a deal to extend his career into 2024.

Nonu last pulled on the black jersey in 2015 but is still not giving up on his playing career despite being 41 years old.

Major League Rugby side, the San Diego Legion, announced Nonu's re-signing ahead of the 2024 season.

The All Blacks great is the second huge signing confirmed by San Diego, who also lured Wallabies legend Matt Giteau out of retirement.

While Nonu and Giteau clashed on countless occasions throughout their career for New Zealand and Australia, they become teammates for a second time, having played alongside one another at Top 14 club Toulon.

"The Legend is back for another year," head coach and director of rugby Danny Lee said in a statement confirming Nonu's signing.

"We are thrilled to have Ma'a back for the 2024 MLR season after an outstanding 2023. Ma'a had a major influence on our team last season on and off the field and was a major factor in us having a very successful season, playing in the MLR final and us breaking Club and League records along the way. We go again."

Nonu's return is a statement of intent from San Diego, who lost to the New England Free Jacks in the 2023 Major League Rugby final.

During the 2023 season, he showed no signs of slowing down and even slotted a key drop goal in the semi-finals of the competition.

The centre adds a wealth of experience to the side, having won two Rugby World Cups as the All Blacks lifted the William Webb Ellis Cup in 2011 and 2015.

He also won five Tri Nations/Rugby Champions Cup titles and eight Bledisloe Cups in his 103 Test caps.

Nonu played 159 Super Rugby matches across his stints with the Hurricanes, Highlanders, Blues and Chiefs.

During his time in France, he played 93 times for Toulon before returning to the Blues.

The 2024 Major League season kicks off on the first weekend of March, with San Diego taking on the Seattle Seawolves.

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