Vito to leave Hurricanes for La Rochelle


World Cup winner Victor Vito is to leave the Hurricanes for La Rochelle on a three-year deal at the end of the coming season, bringing the curtain down on his New Zealand career in the process.

Vito has won 33 All Blacks caps and was part of the victorious squads at both the 2011 and 2015 Rugby World Cups.

The 28-year-old loose forward was also a member of the Hurricanes team that lost last year's Super Rugby final to the Highlanders, but 2016 will be his last opportunity to add that particular honour to his CV - for the time being, at least.

"I feel truly blessed to have had the opportunity to represent the All Blacks, Wellington and the Hurricanes over the past 10 years," he said.

"It's been an honour and I've cherished every match, but I feel like the time has come for a fresh challenge and I'm excited about the next chapter with La Rochelle."

Discussing his time with the All Blacks, for whom he made his debut in 2010, Vito added: "If I'm honest I probably wasn't mentally ready until 2014.

"Luckily for me Steve Hansen and the other coaches persevered and over the past two years in particular I've been pretty proud of what I've done in the black jersey.

"It's never easy to fight the ego and say no to the chance to represent your country, but my young family trumps my ego any day, especially when there is a chance to provide them with a better future."

Vito heads to the Top 14 having made 84 appearances for the Hurricanes.