All Blacks star Jordie Barrett to make Leinster switch as long-term future secured

Adam Kyriacou
Jordie Barrett for All Blacks against Ireland.

Jordie Barrett for All Blacks against Ireland.

Leinster have announced the signing of All Blacks star Jordie Barrett, who will arrive on a short-term deal next season as part of a new contract with New Zealand Rugby (NZR).

Barrett has become the first All Black to commit his services beyond the 2027 Rugby World Cup, inking a deal that will see him aligned with NZR, the Hurricanes and Taranaki until the end of 2028.

As part of the contract extension, Barrett will enjoy a short stint in Ireland after his New Zealand commitments are over for 2024. Starting in December he will spend six months at Leinster, returning to a place that has strong connections to the Barrett family.

Family ties

In 2000, Barrett and his family moved to County Meath when his father Kevin, a former Hurricanes and Taranaki lock, took up an offer to play professional rugby in Athlone while also managing a farm.

The relationships built during that period give this trip extra meaning for the 57-Test All Black who has set a goal of growing his game with a team that has provided the bulk of Ireland’s national squad for years.

“It’s a special place for the Barrett family,” he said. “We’ve got so many great family connections in Oldcastle, in County Meath and throughout Dublin. To have an opportunity to go back and meet some family and friends and connections that were made twenty years ago is pretty cool.”

Barrett was thankful to New Zealand Rugby for helping facilitate the short-term Leinster move and can’t wait to return to a place that he has visited in recent years.

“I’m certainly grateful to New Zealand Rugby – the Hurricanes are sending me off with their best wishes and are very excited which is awesome – and obviously to Razor for signing off,” he added.

“It’s going to be a great place for me to develop as a rugby player in a different environment where I’ll learn so many different things. And also to have a freshen up going into another World Cup cycle and some great years ahead with the All Blacks, Hurricanes and Taranaki.

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“As a whole, I think this move is going to be really challenging, but a positive challenge. Heading north to different conditions, different teams, different referees – I think it will open my game up, make me see the game differently and I’ll ultimately bring the best bits back to New Zealand rugby and into a Test jersey, ideally, at the end of it.

“The reality of being a professional athlete is that you’ve only got a small window to have these opportunities and I’d love to be sitting there in twenty or thirty years with my kids or grandkids, knowing that I left no stone unturned, and I took up this opportunity to better myself.”

The length of Barrett’s NZR contract also signals his interest in potentially playing against the British and Irish Lions, who are set to tour New Zealand in 2029.

Long contract

“Jordie’s commitment to the All Blacks shows his passion and loyalty for the jersey,” said New Zealand head coach Scott Robertson. “We are proud he has shown that by signing for this length of time.”

“Jordie was very clear from the start around the fact that he wanted to use this sabbatical to improve his game.

“We will help him achieve that while making sure he is looked after mentally and physically. After months of discussions and collaboration with Leinster, we feel they are the right club to do that. They have a proven track record of creating internationals and helping players achieve their goals.

“We know this will be hugely beneficial for Jordie as a person and as a player.”

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