So it was with some joy that we read this morning that moves are afoot to bring Carl Hayman back to New Zealand rugby, perhaps as early as the end-of-season tour to the Northern Hemisphere. The Sunday Star-Times reports:
Carl Hayman is poised to be rushed back into the All Blacks as early as their end-of-year grand slam tour.
The Sunday Star-Times has learnt the giant prop is now sold on the idea of coming home from England to finish his career, if his terms can be met. And that has sparked a flurry of activity in the Wellington business community, with Hurricanes boss Greg Peters trying to solicit third-party funding to help Hayman realise his dream of buying a farm in Taranaki.
The New Zealand Rugby Union has moved heaven and earth to get Hayman home in time for the 2011 world cup, digging deep to fund the majority of his considerable salary. But it is about $150,000 short, so the Hurricanes have been brought in on the deal and have been asked if they can cover the shortfall by exploring avenues such as third-party funding.
Peters said a "number of parties were interested" in helping secure Hayman's signature, and it was vital the Wellington and New Zealand rugby unions worked together with the private business sector to get the deal done.
"Taranaki would be first port of call [for the Air New Zealand Cup]," he said. "But we would love to see him playing for the Hurricanes."
Carl Hayman in the Hurricanes? Yes please! We're sure that regular commenter pdm will concur too, given his thoughts on the current Hurricanes front row!!