Rugby

Ioane knocking on All Black door

2017-06-10 13:19
Rieko Ioane (Getty)

Cape Town - Recent All Blacks call-up Rieko Ioane has revealed he is happy playing on the wing as he looks to push for a spot in the Test line-up.

Ioane, who is deadly at outside centre, has been moved further out at the Blues this season and is flourishing under head coach Tana Umaga.

The youngster does have a job though displacing one of the All Black starters but his versatility could help him when it comes to matchday.

"We have got to look at not only picking a 33, but a matchday 23. So who is going to start, who is going to come off the bench, who impacts and who covers. All those variables go into the selection discussion," selector Grant Fox told Stuff, which would put Ioane into the frame.

With 10 tries in Super Rugby this year, Ioane has been in devastating form and he puts that down to Umaga's decision to move him there.

"Tana talked to me about why he wanted me on the wing," said the finisher. "I am happy enough when we have got players like George and Sonny there. You have to make room for them. They're awesome players.

"I'm happy on the wing. I'm starting to see lots of ball, and they're sucking in a lot more defenders and there are gaps out there. I'm enjoying it there.

"The style of play the Blues have suits the way I like to pay. Tana encourages a lot of running rugby and with the personnel we have out there, I thrive off the offloads or whatever they can do to create some space."

He added on his own game: "I've got a lot more confident in myself. Having the likes of Sonny and George around helps increase my skills and professionalism. Now it's just about my overall game. I'm starting to work on my kicking and vision a lot more.

"Other than that I'm looking to take what the coaches give me on board and to keep improving. But the confidence is a huge one coming off that end-of-year tour."

Read more on:    all blacks  |  rugby
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