The Queensland Reds have locked in Japanese Test star and back-row standout Hendrik Tui for another season of Super Rugby.
New Zealand-born Tui, 28, has extended his contract with the franchise until the end of 2017.
Limited in his contribution last year due to injury, Tui has been one of the Reds’ best this season and leads all loose forwards in the competition for carries (93) and has beaten the second-most defenders (28).
He has also been Queensland’s second-most productive attacking threat, behind Samu Kerevi.
“I’m really happy to be coming back to the Reds in 2017,” Tui said.
“I was disappointed not be able to contribute as much as I wanted to in my first season with the Reds, so this year has been a rewarding experience, being able to prove to myself and my teammates that I can contribute at this level.
“I see my future at the Reds. I’ve loved my time here so far and I want to keep working hard and contributing to the Reds.”
Tui’s commitment is a coup for the Reds, who will lose flanker Liam Gill to French rugby next year but have signed Brumbies and Wallabies captain Stephen Moore.
“Our 2017 player list is coming together very well and Hendrik will be an important part of that group,” Reds general manager of rugby Daniel Herbert said.