Hika Elliot and Sherwin Stowers will both be back in Steelers' colours for the Mitre 10 Cup.

Both players have donned the red, black and white jersey before, with Elliot and Stowers both playing an integral part in Counties Manukau's Ranfurly Shield success in 2013.

Elliot, 30, has played five times (including four tests) for the All Blacks, and says he's excited to be joining Counties Manukau again in 2016.

"It will be great to be back at Counties and hopefully continue the success from the Chiefs onto the Mitre 10 Cup. I'm really loving my rugby at the moment, after suffering a near career-ending injury at the end of 2013."


Elliot has also appeared for Hawke's Bay, Poverty Bay and Taranaki in his long first-class career.

Stowers, 30, is a proud Counties Manukau man, having played 68 games for the Steelers, the last of which was in 2014.

"I'm excited to be back playing for Counties and putting the jersey back on. I'm really looking forward to playing 15s after focusing on NZ 7s in 2015. The Steelers squad has been hit with a few injuries to senior players so I'm keen to play my role, supporting some of the newer players in the Mitre 10 Cup competition".

Counties Manukau Steelers head coach Darryl Suasua is delighted to have both Elliot and Stowers on board for the 2016 campaign.

"Hika's experience is invaluable. He's been playing really well for the Chiefs and with the loss of Nepo Laulala and Pauliasi Manu through injury, he can add some of that leadership in our pack.

"With Sherwin, before he got into sevens, he was on the rise in the 15s game. He was coming up with the Blues and played well for us at fullback and on the wing. It's great to have him back. He's a passionate Counties man, he loves the province and he's keen to get back into the 15-a-side game."

The first chance to catch the Steelers in action at home this season is against Samoa A at Pukekohe's ECOLight Stadium on Friday August 5, kickoff at 6:30pm.