Super Rugby
Rebels secure Somerville and MacDonald
April 23, 2010
Gloucester prop Greg Somerville looks to spark an attack, Gloucester v Worcester, Guinness Premiership, Kingsholm, Gloucester, England, January 2, 2010
Greg Somerville will trade Gloucester for Melbourne © Getty Images

Amid the turmoil of disgraced chief executive Brian Waldron's exit from the franchise, the Melbourne Rebels have continued their recruitment drive with the capture of former All Black prop Greg Somerville and ex-Highlanders lock Hoani MacDonald.

Waldron walked on Friday after being implicated in the Melbourne Storm's salary cap scandal but head coach Rod Macqueen is continuing to build a competitive squad after previously securing the services of fly-half Danny Cipriani, Wales No.8 Gareth Delve plus Wallabies and Waratahs hooker Adam Freier and Queensland Reds tight-head prop Laurie Weeks.

Somerville will return to Super rugby after a spell in England with Gloucester while MacDonald will trade the Newport-Gwent Dragons for the Rebels. Somerville, the most-capped All Blacks prop, has agreed to a two-year deal, a move that makes him ineligible for next year's World Cup as the New Zealand Rugby Union will not select overseas-based players.

"We've earmarked certain players we think would be ideal for a start-up franchise and Greg fits that bill," Macqueen said. "There are few better in understanding scrums. Rugby is still about foundations and as far as scrummaging is concerned I could not have thought of a better man. He'll bring a good culture to the side as well.

"We've got to be competitive from day one so these types of players are going to be very important to us."


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