Milner-Skudder’s contract in jeopardy

By Te Ao - Māori News

Former All Black Nehe Milner-Skudder may well be out of glamour club Toulon without even playing a game, according to reports out of France.

The 28-year-old winger, who scored the first try in the 2015 World Cup final, has had a wretched time with injuries since, and has not played in over a year.

He missed the entire Super Rugby season with the Hurricanes, before leaving NZ to the big spending French club. Milner-Skudder’s last game was the All Blacks’ 69-31 win over Japan in Tokyo last year.

French sports daily L’Equipe has reported that Milner-Skudder’s contract has not yet been approved by the French League. Before this happens, he must have a medical examination and it appears this might not happen due to ongoing shoulder problems.

However, this was denied in a statement yesterday by the French club, who have said he will join them next month.

The recent salary cap scandal with Saracens could spill over and affect Toulon’s decision with the former All Blacks, as the English club will be forced to offload players. One of them is likely to be Welsh winger Liam Williams, who Toulon would be happy to have in place of the injured Milner-Skudder.

Milner-Skudder was the surprise package of the 2015 season, starring for the Hurricanes as the side made their second-ever finals appearance. He then went on to make his All Black debut later that season, scoring two tries against the Wallabies in Sydney.

He missed the entire 2016 test season with injury, before returning to play three matches for the All Blacks in 2017, then two last year. In all, he scored 12 tries in 13 tests.