Super Rugby
Shota Horie re-signs with Melbourne Rebels
ESPN Staff
July 2, 2014
Shota Horie (left and fellow Japan international Malu Seu have settled in Melbourne © Getty Images

Shota Horie has agreed fresh terms with Melbourne Rebels, signing a new one-year contract.

The Japan hooker, 28, has played 17 times for the Rebels in 2013, making 10 appearances this season, and his "very happy to stay here in Melbourne".

"One month ago, we had a baby (Yoshino) and I had to decide whether to stay in Melbourne for another year or go back to Japan," Horie said. "My wife, Yukari, told me that if I want to stay as a Rebel, we can do that; the baby will be fine here.

"Super Rugby is a very difficult competition, and this year we haven't won enough games. I want to win more Super Rugby games at the Rebels, and I want more Super Rugby game time."

Rebels 20-36 Reds (Australia only)

Horie said that he had improved as a player for being challenged by Rebels coach Tony McGahan.

"Dumper [McGahan] is very hard on me, but I am learning a lot," Horie said. "Particularly at the breakdown and the contact area. The coach has been very good for me, and I am happy to keep working with him."

McGahan said: "Shota's a very popular member of the group, not only through the way he plays but also through his personality and I think just his general consideration of others in the program. He is always happy to be at work, and to get stuck in and get the job done; as a team-mate you really appreciate those sorts of attributes.

Horie will compete with Pat Leafa and fit-again Tom Sexton for the starting hooker spot next season, after returning to play in the Japanese Top League for champions Panasonic Wild Knights while Leafa and Sexton play in the National Rugby Championship.

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