NZ pivot Beauden Barrett set to be tested by the Boks
All Black flyhalf Beauden Barrett may have seen off Aaron Cruden's internal challenge but the Springboks will ask more questions of him than ever before.
Barrett is a proven match-winner and despite his goalkicking and disciplinary lapses‚ he always finds a way to make up for his mistakes.
However‚ he will have to be at his best for Saturday's Rugby Championship encounter against the Springboks at the North Harbour Stadium in Albany
Barrett‚ who has conceded six yellow cards this season‚ is aware of the step up the All Blacks need to make even though they have the wood over the Springboks.
“We'll be expecting a little bit more from South Africa and we've learnt our lessons from the Argentina game. The Springboks are a very strong side and if we go by the team that played against Australia‚ they have very strong and physical ball carriers along with elusive backs. We expect them to use the ball in the wide channels‚” Barrett said
“We've always got work to do as a team. We're very hungry and excited to get better each week and each day. We're not feeling the angst. We may not be as proud as we could be with our performances of late but we've learnt from them and we're excited about this weekend and the opportunity.”
The All Blacks also have Ryan Crotty back‚ which could lead to the improvement of their midfield defence.
While the All Blacks have been content to run in tries‚ they've had some defensive issues that were exposed by Argentina and Australia. Barrett said the Crusaders centre will be crucial to their cause.
“When Ryan is there‚ he's a very good communicator and a great thinker of the game. He provides a lot of certainty to the players either side of him and he understands the game very well‚” Barrett said.