The Highlanders have held meetings with All Blacks Hosea Gear and Andrew Hore as they look to bolster their resources ahead of their Super Rugby campaign next year.
Hurricanes wing Gear has not committed to a franchise for next season and he was picked up by his former New Zealand Maori and current Highlanders coach Jamie Joseph at the Dunedin airport last week before being taken on a tour of the new indoor Forsyth Barr Stadium where the team will play next year and meeting with the coaching staff.
Highlanders chief executive Roger Clark told stuff.co.nz: "We invited him down to look at the stadium and meet our people, the coaches really. It's a matter of providing an option really. It's been no secret we are looking for a couple of X-factor players to add to the nucleus we've got and Hosea obviously fits the bill."
The Highlanders have also been in talks with discarded Hurricanes skipper Andrew Hore who lives in Central Otago and Clark explained that this player recruitment drive is crucial to their lofty ambitions in the near future.
He said: "These are prospective Highlanders players for next year who we've brought down to look at the place. It's important from a player's perspective that they do their due diligence and from our perspective that we provide that opportunity for them.
"Ours has been a bit of a hard sell. We haven't performed that well in the past, but this year was the start of something we'd like to think is going to be special.
"Jamie [Joseph] was the start of that and he lured a couple of players on that basis. Jarrad [Hoeata] is a classic example of what can happen when you give a kid an opportunity, and we have a new stadium next year that we're pretty proud of and that's something we have to sell to them," he added.
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