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Canterbury Rugby Club scrum-half Dan Smart returns to New Zealand

Canterbury Rugby Club have said goodbye to a popular member of their first team squad.

Scrum-half Dan Smart, a consistent performer for the Black and Ambers over the past six years, is returning to New Zealand.

The 28-year-old, who joined Canterbury in 2014, has won England international and Kent county honours during a successful spell at the Marine Travel Ground.

Dan Smart in possession during Canterbury's 19-10 play-off win against Chester last season Picture: Phillipa Hilton
Dan Smart in possession during Canterbury's 19-10 play-off win against Chester last season Picture: Phillipa Hilton

Smart, a Kiwi, qualified for England recognition through an English mother.

He was an important member of the Canterbury side which won promotion to National League 1 for the first time in the club's history last season.

The club clinched their place in rugby's third tier with Smart one of the try scorers in a 19-10 play-off victory over Chester in May.

Canterbury head of rugby Andy Pratt admitted Smart will be much missed.

He added: “Dan has made a huge contribution in his time at Canterbury.

"He has played over 150 games for the club and played an integral role in our promotion winning season last year.

"Off the field he coached the women’s squad for many seasons and supported many youth teams and players.

"Intending to stay only a couple of years, he returns home with a degree from Christ Church University, an England Counties cap (against Georgia) and, I am sure, many wonderful memories.

"I am disappointed that the current coronavirus situation has meant we could not give him the farewell we would like.

"However, Dan will always be welcome at the club."

Read more: All the latest sports news in Kent


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