Hawke's Bay Magpies utility back Stacey Ili will return to the province on Sunday and will play club rugby for Napier Old Boys Marist from June 22.
The return of Ili and former Magpies prop Jody Allen are features of a 42-strong Magpies squad named today to prepare for the July 3 pre-season match against Manawatu at Napier's McLean Park. Ili, 28, played 10 first class games for the Magpies in the starting XV last year, nine at centre and one at first five-eighth, before heading overseas for a stint with the Singapore-based Asia Pacific Dragons in the Global Rapid competition.
Before coming to the Bay last year Ili spent two years with Irish provincial side Connacht after previous playing for Auckland and Melbourne Rising.
Allen, 31, played the last of his 10 first class games for the Magpies in 2013. The former North Harbour rep recently returned to the Bay after playing in Spain and had his first starting XV appearance for Taradale Rugby and Sports against Napier Pirate Rugby and Sports at the weekend after an appearance as a substitute the previous weekend.
"We can't turn a blind eye to a player of Jody's experience. It will be good to get him in our training environment and see how he progresses," Magpies head coach Mark Ozich said.
Ozich has also named the injured pair of Napier Old Boys Marist loosie Ricky Hayes and Napier Technical outside back Penikolo Latu. Hayes is expected to be back in action in a fortnight after recovering from a leg injury and while Latu will be out of action for another 10 weeks Ozich said it is crucial to keep Latu in the training environment.
Ozich agreed his latest squad had a "developmental look".
"We've got the likes of Donovan Mataira, Liam Udy-Johns and Tyrone Dodd-Edwards in there. They are seen as potential future Magpies and while it may not be this year it will be in the next year or two."
He intends to play 26 players against Manawatu.
"This squad has a good mix of older and younger guys. While all of them may not play against Manawatu being involved in the trainings will assist their progress," Ozich added.
The squad is:
Jason Long, Jody Allen, Joel Hintz, Josiah Tavita-Metcalfe, Mark Braidwood, Pouri Rakete-Stones, Tim Farrell, Jack Nelson-Murray, Jacob Devery, Matt Morrison, Dan Law, Donovan Mataira, Elijah Martin, Tom Parsons, Albert Hemopo, Eru Wano, Hannon Brighouse, Iakopo Mapu, Josh Kaifa, Liam Udy-Johns, Ricky Hayes, Solomone Funaki, Humphrey Sheild, Zac Donaldson, Shamara Brookes, Lincoln McClutchie, Tamati Samuels, Antonio Mikaele-Tu'u, Lewis Marshall, Neria Fomai, Sam McNicol, Stacey Ili, Timo Vaiusu, Tyrone Dodd-Edwards, Anzelo Tuitavuki, Caleb Makene, Lester Maulolo, Mason Emerson, Michael Buckley, Ollie Sapsford, Penikolo Latu, Saia Paese.