New Zealand
All Blacks star Conrad Smith signs for Pau
ESPN Staff
February 5, 2015
Conrad Smith will be in France next term © Getty Images

Conrad Smith has agreed to join PROD2 side Pau on a two-year deal in a move that will bring to an end his All Blacks career later this year.

Smith, regarded as one of the world's finest outside centres, has won 85 caps for the All Blacks but has decided it is time for a fresh challenge and he will journey to France after the World Cup.

"I have loved my time playing rugby in New Zealand and really looking forward to what will be my last season here, but it feels like the right time for me move on and try something different," Smith said. "Having a stint in France will allow me to spend more time as a husband and father, which was the main motivation for me when I made the decision."

New Zealand Rugby CEO Steve Tew said Smith exemplified everything that was great about the game of rugby. "He is an outstanding person, one of New Zealand rugby's most consistent players over the last decade and hugely respected by all who know him. We owe Conrad, and others who have represented their teams so well over many years, a great deal of gratitude."

All Blacks head coach Steve Hansen paid tribute to Smith, saying: "On behalf of the All Blacks, I want to publicly acknowledge the outstanding contribution Conrad has made - and continues to make - to the All Blacks. He is a world-class player and leader in our team and we look forward to that continuing this season. We in the All Blacks wish both Conrad and his wife all the very best for their new adventures next season."

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