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'It will change a few lives' - Lima Sopoaga using English payday to help family

Former All Blacks first-five Lima Sopoaga has opened up about his decision to trade the black jersey for financial security, leaving New Zealand for English side Wasps earlier this year.

Sopoaga, 27, became yet another All Black to head abroad, signing a lucrative deal with English Premiership side Wasps, forgoing the chance to turn out for New Zealand at next year's World Cup in Japan.

In an interview with The Times though, Sopoaga says that the financial security on offer from the English club was too great to turn down.

"To come over here, to uproot my partner [Miriam] and daughter [Milla, aged one] was a very big decision," Sopoaga said.

"But in the long run, it will be the right one. Guys in New Zealand who are second or third string, we're not getting paid the same as the Beauden Barretts.

"I fell into that category, I've no qualms about it, that's the way it goes."

Sopoaga also said that his English payday is going towards helping his extended family, rather than on extravagant purchases.

"I'm not just playing for myself over here, it's about making a better life for my family, making Mum and Dad's life a bit easier, brothers and sisters, nieces and nephews.

"Now, if I'm smart and make the right choices, if I'm not buying stupid cars and stuff like that, this money will be put to good use. It won't just change my life, it will change a few lives."

Sopoaga concluded by saying he has no regrets about his exit from New Zealand Rugby and the All Blacks jersey.

"Yeah, you can say, who wouldn't want to play 50 Tests and go to a World Cup?"

But I've been an All Black, it was an awesome part of my life. But life's not always that simple and it's time to write a new chapter."

Lima Sopoaga celebrates against South Africa
Lima Sopoaga celebrates against South Africa Source: Photosport


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