Ben Smith Highlanders sign Blues fullback Michael Collins and rising star Vilimoni Koroi

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The Highlanders have signed Otago fullback Michael Collins while also locking down rising star Vilimoni Koroi on a three-year deal from 2021-2023.

Otago excitement machine Koroi will focus on the Tokyo Olympics next year as part of New Zealand Sevens outfit but the Highlanders have wasted no time in securing the 21-year-old for the longer term after some outstanding Mitre 10 Cup form.

Ben Smith Otago fullback Michael Collins will try and fill the gap left by Ben Smith at the Highlanders.

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Otago fullback Michael Collins will try and fill the gap left by Ben Smith at the Highlanders.

Otago loose forward Sione Misiloi, who can play No 6 or No 8, has also been picked up by the Highlanders as they fill out their squad for next year’s competition.

Otago product Collins, 26, struggled with a groin injury during this year’s Super Rugby campaign with the Blues and has only recently returned to the paddock at Mitre 10 Cup level.

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But his cool head, leadership qualities and ability to read the game will be needed at the Highlanders next year after the loss of some seasoned campaigners in the post-Rugby World Cup exodus, including co

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