Former New Zealand Maori and Hawke's Bay Magpies rugby loosie Karl Lowe made a big call before leaving the province last year to play in Japan.

"Keep an eye on Jonah, he is going to be the best of all of us Lowe brothers," Lowe said referring to the youngest of four Lowe brothers to turn out for the Clive club.

Considering Lowe played for the Junior All Blacks and Maori All Blacks in 2010, 41 games for the Hurricanes between 2009 and '13 and 100 games for the Magpies between 2004 and '13 it was definitely something to note down at the time.

Although Jonah, 18, who is back in the Bay after two seasons in Auckland and a member of the Hawke's Bay Magpies wider training group has never heard the call, he certainly can't be accused of not backing it up.


"Every one of the brothers will say one of the others is the best. Everyone knows about Karl and Jamie went pretty far too," he said referring to hooker Jamie who made numerous Hawke's Bay rep teams and was a tryscoring machine in Hawke's Bay premier club rugby before injury forced him to retire early.

"I'm just focusing on this year rather than the future. But, at the same time, I have to thank Karl for putting our name out there and opening a few gates for me," Jonah said, before joining his Clive teammates for a training session last night in the buildup to tomorrow's annual Hawke's Bay Sevens tournament in Waipukurau.

It's fair to say Jonah opened a few gates for himself after leaving St John's College in Hastings to complete the final two of his secondary school years at King's College in Auckland. The centre-winger was the top tryscorer in Auckland's 1A competition as he helped the King's College 1st XV reach the semifinals in 2013.

Last year he was again a key figure as the King's finished sixth in the comp. He made the Auckland Under-18s, the Blues Under-18s and the New Zealand Secondary Schools team, who beat their Aussie counterparts.

"I couldn't be happier with how things went up there," Jonah said.

With last year's regular starting wingers for the Magpies, Richard Buckman and Ryan Tongia, on Super Rugby duty, Jonah could find himself in the Magpies team for the early Ranfurly Shield defences against Wairarapa Bush, Horowhenua-Kapiti and Mid Canterbury in July. If Buckman fails to recover from a knee injury, which is likely to end his Super season, Jonah could make the ITM Cup squad.

"While I'm hoping to get some game time with the Magpies there is no rush at the moment. I'm just happy to be part of the wider training group and receiving a high level of training with older, stronger and more experienced players with high expectations," he said.

The EIT Sport and Recreation course student's more immediate concern is becoming familiar with the sevens game so he doesn't let brother Karl, who will coach Clive tomorrow while home on holiday from Japan, down.

"I've never played sevens before so it's going to be tough. The Clive boys have been training hard so they should be pretty fit," Jonah said.

Tomorrow's 40-team tournament will be the start of a big week for Jonah, who was named after another more than handy winger with the surname Lomu. On Wednesday he will be one of five Hawke's Bay players in the Hurricanes Under-20 team which will take on their Blues counterparts in Taupo.

Fullback Nick Biss, fellow winger Mason Emerson and lock Sanaila Waqa and Jonah will all start, and prop Sean Morrison is on the bench. Manawatu-based former Hawke's Bay hooker Travis Taylor is also on the bench.

Taylor captained the 2011 Hawke's Bay Under-16 team which also included Morrison, Emerson, Biss and Jonah.

Hastings Rugby and Sports will chase a third consecutive Ian Baker Cup win tomorrow and Clive are one of their section play opponents.