Star fly-half Beauden Barrett may well be a part of the next All Blacks cycle after revealing that he has been in “positive” talks with New Zealand Rugby.
There has been uncertainty around whether the oldest of the Barretts would be staying overseas after his stint with Toyota Verblitz in Japan next year. However, the playmaker dropped some big suggestions that he could return home.
Barrett revealed it is all still ongoing but things look good. Hence why the Test centurion is not set to have a farewell game of any sort this weekend as Super Rugby Pacific enters the quarter-finals stage.
The Blues welcome the Waratahs to Eden Park this weekend for their first play-off and Barrett, like all his teammates, is looking forward to the clash.
“I haven’t thought about it like that,” Barrett said. “It could be my last… certainly this year. I’m still plotting my future whatever happens post-World Cup and beyond. For this squad it could be our last game, but that’s not our mentality. We’re looking at it as an opportunity, and we’re excited by it.”
“It’s all eventuating. It’s happening. I’ll let you know when we’ve got some news, but it’s all positive,” he said. “It’s all on the table, and that’s been clear from the start of the year.”
Ready to return
Barrett has been sidelined for two weeks after his Achilles was damaged but returns this weekend eager to go.
“I’m feeling good,” he said. “It hasn’t been frustrating because the expectations were pretty clear early on that it could take some time to heal. It was a deep cut and got a fair amount of stitches, so the concern was to push the range and pop the stitches if my eagerness took over.
“But I was pretty patient and trusted what the docs were saying, and here I am available for the quarterfinals.
“It was a sprig straight across my Achilles. It did everything but get the tendon. I was pretty lucky – it could have been (my year over).”
The All Blacks squad is set to be announced soon and whilst Barrett wanted to impress so he can go to the Rugby World Cup, it all starts with performing in the knockouts.
“When you start your season there’s a World Cup in the calendar for a lucky few who make it,” he said.
“But right in front of us is a quarter-final. Everyone knows you’ve got to earn that spot, and the only way to do that is by letting your actions do the talking in high-pressure situations – quarter-finals, semi-finals and finals.”
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