Chris Masoe

An all-action loose forward, Chris Masoe brings power, pace and a huge work ethic to any side he plays for. Masoe announced his arrival as a world-class openside flanker when he scored a match-winning try in the Hurricanes’ 26-24 victory over the Waratahs in 2005. Coming on as a replacement, Masoe had a blinder and it was his efforts that helped win the day.

Masoe went on to star for Taranaki in 2005 in their match against the British and Irish Lions and in the NPC, and consequently earned a call-up to the Junior All Blacks and then into the All Blacks for their end of season tour to the UK. He played in the tests against Wales and England and in another eight in 2006 as back up to captain Richie McCaw, was part of the ‘protected’ 22 at the start of 2007 and went to the World Cup, before missing All Blacks selection in May 2008.

Previously, Masoe had been an integral part of the New Zealand Sevens team in 2001, 2002 and 2004, playing in 21 consecutive tournaments, culminating in a gold medal at the Manchester Commonwealth games in 2002, and was named New Zealand Sevens Player of the Year in 2002.

Similarly, he was named Taranaki Sportsman of the Year in 2002, before missing much of 2003 to injury, a lowlight in a stellar career that started in Wanganui in 1999. He played one game for the Chiefs in 2001 prior to his Hurricanes debut in 2003. He ended the 2008 season on 62 Hurricanes caps. In 2006 he transferred to Wellington, linking up with Jerry Collins and Rodney So’oialo in a devastating loose forward trio.

His older brother Maselino Masoe was a professional boxer and, until recently, was the WBA Middleweight World Champion.

Masoe transferred to France at the end of the 2008 Air New Zealand Cup, signing with Top 14 side Castres Olympique, helping them to a fifth placed finish in 2009/10.

In October 2012 he was voted the French club Player of the Year.

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