A breakout season is characterised by a sudden significant improvement or increase in popularity. The National Provincial Championship (NPC) always throws up a bundle of exciting new prospects who ‘breakout.’

Few were better in 2022 in that regard than Wellington No.8 Peter Lakai. The 19 year old didn’t make any New Zealand secondary schools’ sides but is now well known on the national radar having made the most carries and fifth most tackles of any player in the NPC as the Lions won both the Ranfurly Shield and overall Championship title.

Lakai was also a member of the New Zealand Under-20’s who convincingly won the Oceania Rugby Under 20 Championship in July.


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