Former Hawke's Bay Magpies rugby player Aayden Clarke has been appointed to the Sport Hawke's Bay board as Ngāti Kahungunu Iwi representative.

He replaces 1980 Kiwis rugby league star Kevin Tamati, now living in Australia.

From the Wairoa area, Mr Clarke played 46 games for Hawke's Bay Magpies, and also played for Wairarapa-Bush and Poverty Bay, as well as having stints abroad in Italy and Japan.

He has been players professional development manager for the Hawke's Bay Rugby Union and is currently contracted in a similar role with the New Zealand Rugby Union.


He is also a consultant for several iwi across New Zealand focusing on tertiary education and Māori economic development, and he has been an assistant head of school for Trades and Technology at EIT.

Sport Hawke's Bay chairman Damon Harvey said Mr Clarke brings a wide range of skills and stakeholder connections to the board.

"We are thrilled to have someone of Aayden's calibre joining us as we look to launch our new strategic plan in the next couple of months," Mr Harvey said.

Mr Clarke said he was honoured to be asked by Ngāti Kahungunu to represent the iwi on Sport Hawke's Bay, and added: "We have many challenges in getting people active and healthy and I'm looking at making a valuable contribution."

Ngāti Kahungunu chief executive officer Dr Adele Whyte said the iwi is keen to maintain and develop its "strong" relationship with Sport Hawke's Bay and sees Mr Clarke as the ideal person to lead that connection.