Cape Town - The All Blacks' mental skills coach Gilbert Enoka has revealed how he introduced a 'no dickheads' policy into the squad.
Enoka says the point of the policy is to wean out inflated egos and make everything about the team, with his central belief being you can’t “be a positive person on the field and a prick off it”.
“A dickhead makes everything about them,” Enoka was quoted as saying on the Wales Online website.
“They are people who put themselves ahead of the team, people who think they’re entitled to things, expect the rules to be different for them, people operating deceitfully in the dark, or being unnecessarily loud about their work.
“Often teams put up with it because a player has so much talent. We look for early warning signs and wean the big egos out pretty quickly. Our motto is, if you can’t change the people, change the people.”
According to Enoka, who has worked with the All Blacks for 16 years, the players themselves call out players who they think may have inflated egos.
The All Blacks are the world's No 1-ranked rugby team and have won the last two Rugby World Cups.
Their next assignment is a three-Test series against the British and Irish Lions starting next month.
The first Test is scheduled for Auckland on June 24, the second for July 1 in Wellington and the final one for July 8 - again in Auckland.