The ongoing saga over Hurricanes captain Brad Shields’ international future has taken another twist after he handed in a formal request to the New Zealand Rugby Union, the BBC report.

Shields, who was born in New Zealand, does actually qualify to represent England through his parents and is hoping to do so this summer.

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However, the New Zealand Rugby Union says it will make a final decision on 27-year-old’s availability in the coming weeks.

The flanker is set to join Wasps later this year and is hoping to be a part of England’s tour of South Africa in June, with World Rugby rules stating that England can select Shields for the series.

Head coach Eddie Jones has also admitted that the flanker could be involved in his World Cup plans if Shields is given the green light.

It is believed that World Rugby could get involved between the two countries if things get complicated and continue to threaten the primacy of international rugby.

One thing is for sure, we certainly haven’t heard the last of Shields’ international future.