Dynamic Canadian forward Tyler Ardron has announced he plans to stick with the Gallagher Chiefs until at least 2021.
The versatile forward has been a consistent performer for the Chiefs since his debut against the Blues in 2018.
The 27-year-old has now notched up 12 caps for the Chiefs, 15 provincial appearances for the Bay of Plenty Steamers and 31 international test caps for Canada.
At 1.96m and 114kg the skilful and adaptable No 8, blindside flanker and lock is grateful and proud to be continuing with the Chiefs.
"I'm excited to have re-signed with the Chiefs. It means the world to me putting on the Chiefs jersey.
"It's great to be out there fighting each week with some of my best friends and brothers alongside of me. I love it here and am grateful for the opportunity to continue playing rugby in the best club competition in the world," said Ardron.
Chiefs head coach Colin Cooper says he is rapt to have Ardron re-sign with the club.
"Tyler is an outstanding team player. On and off the field his work ethic and enthusiasm to learn and develop as a player is praised by the team.
"He is an exceptionally dynamic loose forward and hardworking lock, who is always leading by example and a key contributor to the team. We are grateful to have him extend his contract with the club," Cooper says.
A big year is ahead for Ardron as the Canadian prepares for the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan. Ardron debuted for Canada in 2012.
A natural leader, Ardron captained Canada in the 2015 Rugby World Cup.
Prior to the Chiefs Ardron notched up 64 appearances for Welsh Pro 12 club Ospreys.
This weekend Ardron will again take to the field with his Chiefs teammates for tomorrow's match against the Crusaders in Christchurch.
Kicking off at the earlier time of 5.15pm at Christchurch Stadium, Gallagher Chiefs head coach Colin Cooper has made a number of changes to the starting 15 to face an in form and unbeaten Crusaders line up.
All Blacks Nathan Harris and Nepo Laulala will re-join to start in the front row alongside Aidan Ross. The return of Harris and Laulala means Samisoni Taukei'aho and Angus Ta'avao move to the reserves. A new locking combination of Captain Brodie Retallick and Tyler Ardron will take the field with Michael Allardice being ruled out after sustaining an injury in training. Lachlan Boshier gets the nod as the starting number seven ahead of Mitchell Karpik who has been named in the reserves.
In the backs second five-eighth Anton Lienert-Brown returns refreshed following his week off to combine in the midfield with centre Tumua Manu shifting Alex Nankivell to the bench. Fullback Solomon Alaimalo returns from injury to earn his first start of the season.
First five-eighth Jack Debreczeni will be hoping to impress if given the opportunity to debut off the bench.
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Gallagher Chiefs team to play BNZ Crusaders on Saturday:
Aidan Ross (16)
Nathan Harris (46)
Nepo Laulala (19)
Brodie Retallick (101)
Tyler Ardron (12)
Mitchell Brown (24)
Lachlan Boshier (33)
Taleni Seu (37)
Brad Weber (59)
Damian McKenzie (67)
Etene Nanai-Seturo (3)
Anton Lienert-Brown (57)
Tumua Manu (2)
Sean Wainui (16)
Solomon Alaimalo (26)
Samisoni Taukei'aho (12)
Tevita Mafileo (3)
Angus Ta'avao (19)
Jesse Parete (11)
Mitchell Karpik (15)
Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi (20)
Alex Nankivell (10)
() = Gallagher Chiefs caps in brackets
*denotes Gallagher Chiefs debut
**denotes Investec Super Rugby debut