All Blacks scrum-half TJ Perenara could be lining out for rugby league’s Sydney Roosters before the end of the current NRL season.
Perenara is currently playing for the Red Hurricanes in the Japanese Top League after signing a one-season contract with the Osaka-based club.
The expectation was that the New Zealand international would return to the Hurricanes after his sabbatical in Japan, but New Zealand broadcaster 1 News have reported that Perenara is considering a switch to the NRL.
— 1 NEWS – Sport (@1NewsSportNZ) April 15, 2021
2019 NRL champions the Sydney Roosters have reached out to Perenara’s agent, Warren Alcock, who said he is also currently in discussions with the New Zealand rugby union.
The move would come as a blow to both the All Blacks and the Hurricanes, as Perenara has been an integral player for his country since making his international debut back in 2014.
Signing Perenara would be a bit of a risk for the Roosters as the 29-year-old has never played professional rugby league before, although two of his cousins have played in the NRL.
Japanese Top League season.
Perenara will be contracted to the Red Hurricanes until Top League season finishes on the 23rd of May, meaning he could play for the Roosters this season, as NRL teams can add players to their squad until early August.
The Red Hurricanes have had a mixed season so far in the Top League, winning four of their seven matches to date, but Perenara has been a consistent performer for them.
TJ Perenara covered fly-half well in Super Rugby last year, and in the Top League the Red Hurricanes have been finding ways to get him into that first-receiver slot even when he’s playing 9 — both in phase play and from set piece.
These examples are from their last two games: pic.twitter.com/S13PgXudV3
— The Chase Rugby (@thechaserugby) April 13, 2021
As the Top League season ends before the All Blacks’ first test of the year, Perenara would be able to represent his country in 2021, along with fellow Japan-based All Blacks Beauden Barrett and Brodie Retallick.