New Zealand-born Dean Budd, a Velox Valhallian Alumni, announced his retirement from the international stage as Captain of the Italian National Rugby Team, where he has been a member of since 2017 collecting over 30 caps for his team.
Dean represented Auckland from 2008-2010, before making 5 appearances for the Blues in Super Rugby forum. He took a break and came to Victoria, Canada playing for the Velox Valhallians in the sand box on Gordon Head Rd for the 2009-2010 season as Lock in BC Premier league. He went back to NZ to represent Northland Rugby 13 times in the summer of 2011, before moving to Japan for action in the Top League with NEC Green Rockets. Budd arrived in Italy and to play for Benetton initially in the 2012/2013 season, where he remained to this year. He gained eligibility to play for Italy by way of residency in 2014, making his debut on the international stage for the Italian national team verses Scotland in 2017, Captaining the squad in the RWC 2019 in Japan.
“I want to thank all Italian rugby for these eight years spent together,” said Budd, who is also departing Benetton after making 115 appearances in eight seasons. “When I arrived from Japan in 2012, I would never even have dreamed of being able to live the fantastic adventure that Italy, adopting me both in sport and humanly, put my way. I am proud to have represented this country internationally, to have had the privilege of being captain of the national team in a Rugby World Cup match, of having helped Benetton Rugby achieve an historic qualification to the Guinness PRO14 semi-finals. The last few months have changed the lives of all of us, it’s the right time to look forward to what life has in store for me and my family.”
He was also quoted on social media chatting with fellow Velox teammate Eric “E-Rock” Lopatinsky as stating “It has been a never ending hunger since I left VV, always feasting but never full. The VV and W will always be my mountain peak!”
Westshore Velox RFC wishes Dean Budd many successes in his future endeavors.