Photo: One of The Rugby Network catch-ups.
The New Zealand Rugby Players’ Association and Pacific Rugby Players are building a network for retired professional rugby players called The Rugby Network. The group has been created to provide support and advice for past players who have played rugby in New Zealand and the Pacific Islands.
The Rugby Network team are available to assist retired players with their ongoing personal and professional development, including:
Education and study
Finance and insurance
Mental health and wellbeing advice and services
All retired professional players are encouraged to use the services of The Rugby Network team and any of the Personal Development Managers across New Zealand and the Pacific Islands. The Rugby Network holds a number of events around the country. They are a great opportunity to connect and re-establish the camaraderie that our great game offers. All retired players are encouraged to attend any of The Rugby Network events in any region that suits them.
For information on events or to get any assistance please email firstname.lastname@example.org or phone or WhatsApp Mark Ranby on 021 174 2777.
Meet The Rugby Network team
NZRPA The Rugby Network Manager Mark Ranby is a former Waikato, Manawatu, Chiefs, Hurricanes and All Blacks player, who completed an English degree at Massey University. He played in Japan prior to going to Cambridge University in England where he studied theology. Upon his return to New Zealand, he taught in high schools and has spent over a decade as a Personal Development Manager for Canterbury, the Crusaders and the Highlanders.
Founding chairman and now CEO of Pacific Rugby Players, Hale T Pole was born in Longolongo, Tonga, and moved to New Zealand for his final two years of secondary schooling at Wesley College. He has played for Tonga, including at a Rugby World Cup, and for the Pacific Islanders, Highlanders, Otago, Southland, Northland, Tokyo Suntory Sungoliath, Ricoh Black Rams and Ospreys. Hale is the former director of rugby for the Singapore-based Asia Pacific Dragons team, providing opportunities for Pacific Island players. He is a tireless advocate for the Pacific Island rugby space and hugely passionate about helping people of Pacific descent thrive.
NZRPA Relationship Manager (Career Specialist) Fiona Brading spent time working with youth and in the travel industry before studying sports science and psychology at the University of Auckland. After travelling and working in the recruitment industry in both the United Kingdom and New Zealand, she furthered her studies in career development at AUT before setting up her own career coaching practice. She is also a former North Harbour Personal Development Manager.
Kylie Devlin Sousa
NZRPA Communications Manager Kylie Devlin Sousa has spent nearly two decades serving rugby players in New Zealand. She is the long-standing Personal Development Manager for Counties Manukau Rugby and has worked as the Chiefs’ Media Manager and Counties Manukau’s Communications Manager. She started her own advertising company after working for INL and Stuff and is well travelled. Kylie studied media, communications and public relations at Massey University and is a qualified Pasifika Suicide Prevention Facilitator.