New Zealand Rowing's biggest names are taking a break in 2017.

Men's pair and double gold medallists Hamish Bond and Eric Murray and the women's pair of Rebecca Scown and Genevieve Behrent, who won silver in Rio, are both parting ways for next season.

Murray will resume training post minor surgery on his knee but will be unavailable for international competition during 2017 while Hamish Bond will take a twelve month break.

Single sculler Mahe Drysdale is also taking a break from the sport.

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Two-time Olympic Champion Drysdale has agreed with Rowing New Zealand to a twelve month break from competition with the intention to continue his esteemed rowing career through to Tokyo 2020.

Behrent is taking a year off while Scown resumes training with the summer squad.

Other athletes pressing pause include Zoe Stevenson, two-time world champion in the women's double sculls. Stevenson's crewmate Eve Macfarlane has also chosen to take a year-long break.