Berliner Tageblatt - New Zealand Super Rugby player dies after 'medical event'

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New Zealand Super Rugby player dies after 'medical event'
New Zealand Super Rugby player dies after 'medical event' / Photo: © AFP/File

New Zealand Super Rugby player dies after 'medical event'

Former Otago Highlanders back Connor Garden-Bachop has died aged 25 after an unspecified "medical event", New Zealand Rugby said Tuesday.

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"Connor passed away on Monday following a medical event, and rugby's collective focus at this time is on supporting his family," New Zealand Rugby said in a statement without giving further details.

Garden-Bachop, the son of former All Black Stephen Bachop, played for the Highlanders in this season's Super Rugby competition.

The winger, who also played representative rugby for the Maori All Blacks, comes from a family of New Zealand internationals.

His mother, Susan Garden-Bachop, played for New Zealand's Black Ferns, while his uncle Graeme Bachop also played for the All Blacks.

Garden-Bachop, who was the father of twin girls, made his debut for the Highlanders in 2021, going on to make 30 appearances in Super Rugby.

The club had said he was one of several players not returning next season.

In a recent post on social media platform Instagram, Garden-Bachop praised the Dunedin-based team.

"Thank you @highlandersteam for an unforgettable five years," he wrote.

"Thank you to everyone in the south for making me feel at home, and thank you to the boys I have been honoured to share the field with, it's been a pleasure, I will miss you all. Till next time."