Chiefs forward Hikawera Elliot will mark 100 Super Rugby games this weekend against his former franchise.
In 2008, Elliot made his debut with the Hurricanes and will face them in New Plymouth on Saturday.
Te Kāea spoke to the Chiefs player from Ngāti Awa about this milestone.
He's regarded as the leading hooker for the Chiefs. It all started with the Hurricanes seven years ago.
He's one of the few players in the Chiefs squad to play alongside the late Jerry Collins.
Elliot says, "A lot of people said he was quiet and reserved but once you got to know the guy off the field he was a special kind bloke."
He played 12 matches for the Wellington-based side before heading north to the Chiefs in 2009.
"It's fitting that I play them for the 100 and I am really looking forward to it and it's a moment that I would cherish forever," says Elliot.
He's worn the All Black jersey three times and represented the Māori All Blacks nine times.
In his last appearance for the Māori All Blacks against Canada in 2013, he suffered a serious neck injury that almost forced him to retire.
Elliot says, "The specialist were very doubtful I would make it back but through my stubbornness and hard work and support from my family friends I ticked all the boxes and started every game this year."
At a team presentation last night, he was the recipient of an award called "Chiefs Mana".
"It's special, Liam Messam last year and you have got guys like Tanerau Latimer and guys like Richard Kahui as well so I'm in good company to be recognised by that with the team and coaches and staff here at the Chiefs franchise was awesome," says Elliot.
The Chiefs side will be named this Thursday for their clash against the Hurricanes at home.