Otago signs Italian lock

New Otago lock Josh Furno, playing for Italy, tries to beat Irish flanker Peter O'Mahony at the...
New Otago lock Josh Furno, playing for Italy, tries to beat Irish flanker Peter O'Mahony at the Rugby World Cup in 2015. Photo: Getty Images
The Otago rugby team will have an Italian flavour to it this year.

It has signed lock Josh Furno for the upcoming season, alongside local product Tom Rowe.

Furno has played 37 tests for the Italian national team and has been playing for Zebre in the Pro12 in Europe.

''I'm delighted to be joining Otago ahead of the upcoming Mitre 10 campaign'' said Furno.

''I know it's a very strong competition and I have always wanted to play rugby in New Zealand so this move represents a fantastic opportunity to test myself against the very best.

''I am looking forward to meeting my new teammates and the coaching staff. I will be working hard to show the team’s supporters my best rugby and to help the team achieve our goals this season."

Otago coach Cory Brown said they were important signings with Tom Franklin having left to play for Bay of Plenty this year.

''With the departure of Tom Franklin we were in the position of needing to replace him as well as looking to the future’’ Brown said.

''This is a great opportunity for Tom Rowe and our other players to further develop their game alongside Josh, who is an experienced lineout operator at international level who will add great value to Otago Rugby in 2017.''


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