21 Aug 2008

Weepu extends NZRU contract

5:15 am on 21 August 2008

All Black halfback Piri Weepu says money isn't the motivating factor as to where he plays his rugby.

Weepu has signed an extension to his Rugby Union contract that will see him remain in New Zealand for at least another two years.

He says there were several offers on the table from overseas clubs and while financially they were tempting, his enjoyment and desire to stay near his family proved too strong.

The 24-year-old - who didn't make the World Cup squad - had shown in interest in rugby league but he's back in favour after injuries to other players and some strong performances for Wellington and the Hurricanes.

Weepu has played 22 Tests since making his debut against Wales in Cardiff in 2004, the same year he played his first Super 14 match.

He's also played 56 games for the Hurricanes and 41 for Wellington.

In June Weepu was one of the leading players for New Zealand Maori in the team's unbeaten and successful IRB Pacific Nations Cup campaign.

The NZRU's General Manager of Professional Rugby, Neil Sorensen, says Weepu's an influential player at all levels and they're delighted he's re-signed.