Wasps have confirmed that Hurricanes back-rower Brad Shields will join the club during the 2018/19 season following his Super Rugby commitments with the Hurricanes.
The 26-year-old has made 86 appearances for the Hurricanes since signing for the Super Rugby side in 2012 and played a prominent role in the Hurricanes’ 2016 Championship-winning season. He also skippered the side against the British and Irish Lions in the summer.
Shields has also represented Wellington 57 times, having made his provincial debut as a 19-year-old, and was named the Wellington Lions’ Player of the Season in 2016. Captaining the side last season, he played a key role in the Lions winning promotion back to the Premiership, after defeating Bay of Plenty in a dramatic Championship Final last month.
Shields was part of the New Zealand U20s side that retained the Junior IRB World Championship title in 2011 and was named in the 2012 All Blacks training squad. Last year, Shields represented the Barbarians in the 31-31 draw against the Springboks at Wembley.
Looking ahead to Shields’ arrival next season, Director of Rugby Dai Young said, “We are really pleased that Brad has decided he wants to spend the next stage of his career at Wasps, after completing the next Super Rugby season with the Hurricanes. We are looking forward to seeing the impact he can make for Wasps as he takes on the new challenge of the Aviva Premiership and European Rugby Champions Cup.
“Alongside his natural talent, Brad is recognised for his immense physicality and high work-rate. He has made a number of eye-catching performances, particularly at no. 8, but his versatility to play at 6 will also be beneficial to the squad. We look forward to welcoming him to the club next season and I’m sure he will prove himself a valuable addition to the strong pool of talent we already have in our back-row.”
Ahead of next year’s move to the Aviva Premiership, Brad Shields said, "I'm really excited for the new opportunity to join Wasps. I think the club plays a similar style of rugby to the Hurricanes and feel I will fit in nicely. The club competes well across all the competitions and it's going to be the perfect place for my young family to settle. I'm looking forward to joining the squad after my playing commitments with the Hurricanes finish in 2018."