NZ latest – Chiefs lose Umaga

Keo.co.za brings you news from New Zealand’s Super Rugby franchises.

Chiefs lose Umaga – Tana Umaga has been ruled out of the Chiefs’ two matches in South Africa after picking up a calf injury at training.

Umaga traveled to Johannesburg with the rest of the team, but went down in a practice session on Monday. The Chiefs’ management has confirmed that Umaga is on his way back to New Zealand and will miss the matches against the Lions and Bulls.

Mealamu to remain in NZ – Keven Mealamu has signed a two-year contract extension, which will keep him in New Zealand and with the Blues until 2013.

The 32-year-old hooker joins a host of All Blacks who have committed to the NZRU beyond this season. Mealamu made his All Blacks debut in 2002 and has played 83 Tests. He finds himself behind Richie McCaw and Mils Muliaina (94) and former hooker Sean Fitzpatrick (92) on the all–time Test list.

Other All Blacks who have re-committed to NZRU beyond 2011: hooker Hika Elliot and Keven Mealamu, props Tony Woodcock and Ben Franks, locks Anthony Boric, Tom Donnelly and Sam Whitelock, loose forwards Jerome Kaino, Kieran Read, Daniel Braid, Liam Messam and Victor Vito, and backs Jimmy Cowan, Conrad Smith, Israel Dagg and Aaron Cruden.

Highlanders recall Brown – Tony Brown has been recalled the Highlanders squad to provide much needed cover at flyhalf.

With Colin Slade picking up another jaw injury, Brown will rejoin the squad this week as the Highlanders prepare for their clash against the Crusaders.

The 36-year-old first joined the squad in February after Slade and Liam Sopoaga were injured. He was then released after the win over the Brumbies on 1 April.