Pressure on Carter for All Black 10 jersey
Wed, 08 Aug 2012 6:37p.m.
By Jim Kayes
When the All Blacks tackle Australia in Sydney next Saturday night, Dan Carter is expected to start his 88th test match.
For 70 of those Carter has worn the number 10 jersey, and he's long been regarded the world's best. But Carter’s hold on the All Black 10 jersey is under more pressure than ever before.
Aaron Cruden was happy to take a back seat during the Chiefs’ celebrations following their Super Rugby win, but there's no hiding the impact he's made this year or the impression he's made on the All Blacks selectors.
“I think for the first time in perhaps Daniel’s whole career there is a bit of pressure on him and that's a good thing, because pressure on guys brings the best out of them,” says All Blacks selector Grant Fox.
The pressure has come because Cruden is now more than just a running first-five.
“Clearly the kicking game's an area he's worked on. Goal kicking, he's been outstanding, he's kicking in the 80s, his line kicking's improving in terms of his tactical punting – it's length and it's direction. He's always had a good little kicking game. His restarts have improved markedly,” says Fox.
But it is the other things Cruden does with his feet that set him apart.
“He's good on his feet, he sees what's in front of him really well but one of the keys to him is that he carries the ball in two hands, and that always puts defenders in doubt.”
Carter started at 10 for the All Blacks for the first time in his 15th test, when the All Blacks played Italy in 2004.
He's been there for 70 of the 73 tests he's played since, and showed against Ireland how unlikely it is that the All Blacks vice-captain will relinquish his hold on the jersey any time soon.
“He didn't have one of his better games against the Chiefs in the semi-final, but I think we'll see a supremely motivated Dan Carter when he gets into our environment.”
And with the All Blacks winning 16 of Carter's 21 tests against Australia, that's good news for coach Steve Hansen in his first series against the Wallabies.
Post a Comment
Before commenting, please take the time to read our moderation guide
(Won't be published)
11/08/2012 9:58:40 p.m.
An amazing story on a tired subject. Please look at the last couple of games played by Carter and Cruden and get your rose tinted glasses off. If we are to take the Bledisloe and Rugby Championship, Cruden must be the starting First Five. Have we turned into a country of navel gazing rugby sports writers. Carter's time has been and gone. Two attempts for RWC for zip. We must focus on the future. If not we're going nowhere or worse backwards and there goes the next RWC in London. Come on guys use your grey matter!!!
Neymar scored one goal and set up another for Jo to lift Bra...
Italy clawed back a two-goal deficit to win 4-3 and overcome...
The head of Coliseum Sports Media says getting the rights to...
After the rowing success at the London Olympics, a number of...
While Coliseum says it's focused on football, could they cha...
Copyright © 2013 MediaWorks TV. All Rights Reserved.