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Thorn signs to play for Otago

FORMER All Blacks and Leinster lock Brad Thorn has signed to play for the Otago Highlanders in next year's Super 15 rugby tournament.

THE 38-year-old, who played rugby league for Australia and 59 rugby union Tests for New Zealand, will return from Japan to take up his latest contract.

Thorn was instrumental in helping Leinster retain the Heineken Cup this year - his brief dominance in the second row has been badly missed by the Blues who have struggled in that area since the departure of Nathan Hines.

Highlanders coach Jamie Joseph said: "His (Thorn's) work ethic, experience and leadership will add a great deal to our team and have a very positive influence on younger players."