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22nd Mar 2012 10:17am | By Adam Leyland
Jerome Kaino is to announce his departure from New Zealand rugby tomorrow and that he'll be playing rugby in Japan when his current contract with the NZRU runs out later this year.
The All Blacks Blues loose forward is set to gold a press conference at the office of Esportif, the management agency that represents him.
Kaino, 28, who is out of Rugby for six months following a shoulder operation, had his Super Rugby season end early three weeks ago after picking up a shoulder injury against the Chiefs.
Reports say Kaino is expected to confirm he is off to Japan, with the Toyota Club as the likely destination.
Bruce Sharrock,, Kaino’s agent, told Fairfax Media last weekend that an announcement was imminent, but that there had been a hold up due to Kaino’s operation.
He confirmed this was because clubs were wanting to find out if there would be any lasting damage from his injury that could seriously affect his playing ability.
After consulting with a medical specialist earlier this week, it was confirmed the operation was a success and that there wouldn’t be any lasting damage from the injury.
Kaino, who has played 48 tests for the All Blacks, further established himself as one of the world premier loose forwards during last year’s World Cup and can consider himself desperately unlucky to miss out on France’s Thierry Dusautoir as the 2011 IRB World Player of the Year.
Liam Messam or Adam Thomson are expected to establish themselves as the All Blacks’ leading blindside flanker.