Tighthead specialist Nepo Laulala returned to the All Blacks squad for the 2018 Vista Northern Tour, after a fractured forearm kept him sidelined for most of the year.
The powerful prop made his Investec Super Rugby debut in 2013 for the Crusaders after impressive provincial seasons for Canterbury and benefitted from working alongside the three All Blacks props in the team.
He was called up to the All Blacks for the first time in 2015, playing four pre-Rugby World Cup Tests that year.
He transferred to the Chiefs in 2016 but a serious knee injury kept him out for most of the season. In 2017, he made a strong return to the All Blacks side, playing nine Tests. His hard-working attitude and natural talent makes him an important member of the national side.
The softly-spoken, trained builder was born in Samoa, educated at Auckland’s Wesley College and is one of eight siblings. There’s a fair bit of rugby talent in the Laulala family: older brother Casey was an All Black (two Tests in 2004 and 2006), while brothers Ray and Luteru have played for Counties Manukau.
v Samoa in Apia, 8 July 2015
2011 v North Otago
36 (end of 2014)
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2013 v Chiefs
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