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Warriors sign Kiwi back-rower Harris

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 1/02/2017 Steve Zemek

The Warriors have bolstered their already burgeoning stable of New Zealand Test stars after signing Tohu Harris for the 2018 NRL season.

Harris announced he would leave Melbourne at the conclusion of his contract at the end of 2017 for a four-year deal in Auckland.

At the same time, coach Stephen Kearney confirmed this season will be the last at the club for 2016 captain Ryan Hoffman.

The Warriors intend to this year run out an all-Kiwi international spine with Kieran Foran awaiting NRL clearance to join Shaun Johnson, Issac Luke and new skipper Roger Tuivasa-Sheck.

Harris can't wait to be part of the mix.

"I've had a great time with the Storm and I owe them so much for what they've done for me," Harris said.

"Coming home to play for the Warriors is a fantastic opportunity, though. The club has a great roster with so many Kiwi boys there and being back in New Zealand closer to family is a big attraction."

Since debuting in round one in 2013, Harris has missed just one match on his way to amassing 103 games for the Storm.

He has grown to be one of the best hole-running back-rowers in the NRL and an 80-minute player.

He is also known for his versatility having made several of his 16 Test appearances at centre and five-eighth.

Kearney says it was difficult informing former Kangaroo and NSW Origin second-rower Hoffman, 33, that he won't be required in 2018.

The pair are former teammates at the Storm.

"In a tough time last year I thought - watching from afar - he did a wonderful job," Kearney told Radio Sport.

"When I called Ryan into my office to tell him the news about the captaincy it was tough but it was an easier decision knowing how Ryan was going to take it. He's been wonderfully supportive of the decision and he can see why."

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