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Melbourne Rebels sign All Black

Former All Black back row Adam Thomson has signed for the Melbourne Rebels for the 2016 Super Rugby campaign.

The 33 year-old makes the move south from the Queensland Reds and looks a straight forward replacement for the outgoing Scott Higginbotham, who is leaving the Rebels for Japan.

Thomson, who won the World Cup with New Zealand in 2011, holds 29 Test caps for the All Blacks and makes the Rebels his fourth different club in four years having left the Highlanders for Japanese side Canon Eagles in 2012.

On switching the Suncorp for AAMI Park Thomson said: “Having played against the Rebels for a number of years, I’ve seen some real development; the style they play and the direction the club’s heading is exciting.

“I think my game will fit well with the Rebels and allow me to play some quality football, which I am still very much driven to do.”

The Melbourne outfit looked an improved side in this year’s Super Rugby finishing 10th compared the bottom of the standings in 2014, a progression head coach Tony McGahan expects Thomson to sustain.

“Adam will bring a great deal of experience, ability and dynamism to our squad,” McGahan said.

“He has proven himself to be one of the top loose forwards in the southern hemisphere over a sustained period, and he’ll add a lot to our programme when he arrives.”

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