Highlanders sign Lowe and Holland

Jonah Lowe is heading south to the Highlanders for next season. Photo: Getty Images
Jonah Lowe is heading south to the Highlanders for next season. Photo: Getty Images
Only a few days after being appointed as Highlanders head coach, Clarke Dermody is already adding to his 2023 squad.

The Highlanders have announced Chiefs winger Jonah Lowe and rising lock Fabian Holland will be contracted next year.

Lowe has signed a three-year agreement, while New Zealand colts and Otago lock Holland gets a full contract after making a couple of appearances as a replacement this year.

Lowe (26) had a strong season of Super Rugby, scoring four tries for the Chiefs in the game against the Waratahs.

He made his first-class debut for Hawke's Bay in 2015, played against the British & Irish Lions for the NZ Provincial Barbarians in 2017, and made his debut Super Rugby appearance for the Hurricanes the following year.

Lowe was selected for the Maori All Blacks in 2020, and moved to the Chiefs a year later.

"What I like most about Jonah is the combination of pace and power that he possesses, and they are two great assets for any winger," Dermody said.

"He will strengthen our outsides and in combination with our other Jona [Nareki] will give us some more strike force out wide."

Lowe said he was delighted to be making the move south.

“I have to say I’m looking forward to it and I am very grateful for the opportunity to play for the Highlanders and to play some exciting footy under the roof.

"Playing in front of the Zoo for the home side will also be a thrill."

Teenage lock Fabian Holland has secured Highlanders contract for 2023. Photo: Getty Images
Teenage lock Fabian Holland has secured Highlanders contract for 2023. Photo: Getty Images
Meanwhile, Holland completes a fairytale rise after moving to New Zealand from his native Netherlands at the age of 16.

Initially the Highlanders had planned on the giant lock being involved in 2024 but his development has been so rapid his talent could not be ignored.

It’s his passion for the game and desire to improve that caught the attention of Dermody.

“We all saw Fabian’s physical attributes, but when you really get to know Fabian, you understand that he has a genuine love of the game and of our club.

"It’s very impressive to see that in a man of his age."

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