Parkinson staying for another year

Pari Pari Parkinson will start at lock for the Highlanders against the Rebels on Friday. Photo:...
Pari Pari Parkinson. Photo: Getty Images
There is plenty of potential in Pari Pari Parkinson.

Hopefully, the Highlanders can bring it all out of him.

The Highlanders announced yesterday they had signed Parkinson for another year.

Parkinson started out with the side in 2018 but played only against the Crusaders.

The next year he had six starts but more experienced hands such as Jackson Hemopo and Tom Franklin were preferred.

Last year, he had limited time before the lockdown in Super Rugby but started all eight games in the Super Rugby Aotearoa competition.

He has not been sighted on the field since as a result of ankle surgery, not playing for Tasman in the Mitre 10 Cup last year and he is yet to front for the Highlanders.

He is expected to be available for the match against the Hurricanes this Friday. Injury has often got in the way of Parkinson, who is a talent.

At 2.04m and 130kg, he has the stature and also has the ball skills and athleticism needed at the top level.

His skills and ability were recognised by Highlanders coach Tony Brown.

"Pari Pari has so much potential within him, I feel like he is ready to fire now and over the next few seasons. If he can stay injury-free, he could really dominate his position," Brown said.

"He is big, athletic and an aggressive ball carrier so he has all he needs to be a world-class player.”

Parkinson is keen to look forward rather than back and is happy to be with the Highlanders.

“It’s been a frustrating few years in a way, with injuries. But I am hopeful with the body now in good shape that I can get some good performances under my belt and push on from here,” he said.

“I had options to move on but in the end I believe I will get the best out of myself by staying with the Highlanders. There is a lot I want to achieve over the next few seasons and this is the right team and place to do it from."


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