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Douglas' Crusaders return cancelled

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 4/05/2017 Angelo Risso

The return of Whetu Douglas to Crusaders colours has been canned after the loose forward declined to re-join the Super Rugby team for next week's all-Kiwi derby against the Hurricanes.

The 26-year-old impressed throughout much of 2017 for the Canterbury-based side before signing a two-year deal with Italian outfit Treviso.

The unbeaten Crusaders were hopeful of temporarily holding onto Douglas as injury cover and successfully negotiated with Treviso for his retention, only for the Maori All Black to decide against the move for family reasons.

He will now prepare to fly out to Italy, where Treviso sit in second-last place in the Pro12.

"Unfortunately Whetu will not be joining the team next week as we had hoped for family reasons," a Crusaders spokeswoman said.

"He has said it is with much regret that he has had to make the decision but he needs to do the right thing by his family."

An understrength Crusaders will take on the Bulls in Pretoria this weekend.

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