Waisake Naholo's return to rugby has gone as planned.

The All Blacks winger suited up for the Harbour Hawks in Dunedin club rugby this weekend, scoring a hat-trick in his side's 66-24 victory over Zingari Richmond.

Naholo, who suffered leg injuries before and during the Rugby World Cup, fractured his leg in the Highlanders' opening round Super Rugby loss to the Blues.

However, his recovery is now nearing completion and the Highlanders will be hoping to have him available for their massive clash with the league-leading Chiefs on Saturday.


The Highlanders are currently just inside the playoff picture, sitting in eighth with 28 points, having won six of their nine contests so far.