Financial boost for All Blacks

Date published: December 14 2016

New Zealand's top rugby players are set for a cash boost after a report emerged that there will be an increase of $70m for salaries.

According to Stuff, stars like number eight and captain Kieran Read could soon pick up $1m before add-ons from sponsors and endorsements.

They report that the payment pool will rise from $121m to $191m over the next three years, which will help keep the top players in the country.

"We're really pleased to be in a position where the game has grown its revenue overall," NZR contracts manager Chris Lendrum said, with next year's British and Irish Lions tour set to generate extra revenue.

"This collective was about delivering to the players their fair share of that money because they've been so important earning it and then determining what the most efficient way to spend all that money was."

He added: "We've historically been pretty competitive at the top end of the market. The money is enough combined with the package of being an All Black and the benefits that come with that but certainly this gives us more flexibility to have more players at a higher point than we've ever had.

"It's already come into play with the decisions of some of the senior players over the past 12 months. We're in a position where we can offer considerably more for those players than the equivalent point four or five years ago and that's making life a lot easier for us at that level. But there are still challenges and one or two of those players may still go. That's just the way it is for us."

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