Former All Black Eroni Clarke appointed to NZR Pasifika role

Former All Black centre Eroni Clarke has been appointed New Zealand Rugby's first Pasifika Engagement Manager.

The role is the first of its kind for the governing body and partly came out of the Respect and Responsibility Review in 2017, which highlighted issues around player welfare and participation numbers in the game.

New Zealand Rugby said they were looking for someone who had a deep understanding and commitment to rugby and the ability to engage with the Pasifika community, and ensure their views were heard at the top table.

The Apia-born Clarke played 10 tests for the All Blacks between 1992 and 1998 and is the father of current Blues and New Zealand Sevens star Caleb Clarke.

The 51-year old was part of a Pacific Advisory Group set up in 2017 to help bridge the gap between Pasifika and non-Pasifika involved in Auckland's rugby community, as part of the Navigating Two Worlds project.

Once the sport was back up and running, Clarke would work across both the community and professional rugby environments.

A formal welcome with the Pasifika community is set to take place after the government lockdown ends.