Leeds lose Marshall

Former All Black scrumhalf Justin Marshall could return to the Crusaders set-up after ending his career with Leeds.

Marshall terminated his contract after one season despite having a year remaining on his contract. This follows the Tykes’ relegation from the English Premiership last week. Radio Sport said the club was expected to make an announcement tomorrow.

Marshall publicly stated he did not want to play in the National League One, and said he had played his “heart and guts out this season” and it would be an act of good faith if the club released him.

The report follows Leeds chief executive Gary Hetherington confirming yesterday that Marshall had no escape clause in his deal after he joined them last year.

Robbie Deans, Marshall’s former coach at the Crusaders, said if the combative No 9 wanted to return to New Zealand, he should be warmly welcomed by the New Zealand Rugby Union.

“He’s a class act isn’t he? I would think New Zealand rugby would be delighted to have him back on the roster,” Deans told The Press newspaper.

Deans said the Crusaders “would look at that at the time,” when asked if they would be willing to have Marshall back.