Break­iNg tHe mould

Brodie re tal­lick has re­def ined t he sec­ond- row role and t hat ’s why f or mer eng­land f ly- half St uar t Barnes be­lieves t he all Black is t he best player in t he world

Rugby World - - NEW ZEALAND -

How do you de­fine ‘great­ness’ in rugby union? To play 100 Test matches for the All Blacks? Given their dom­i­nance of the sport, this seems a fair enough cri­te­ria. Only nine men have man­aged it. That’s en­durance at the very high­est level. Cap­tain Kieran Read joined the il­lus­tri­ous club in 2017 and a sec­ond-row made it to three fig­ures this year.

Sam White­lock led New Zealand out against Aus­tralia in the open­ing game of the 2018 Rugby Cham­pi­onship.

And that’s about as much as any of us re­mem­ber of him. Bar fam­ily and friends, the last­ing mem­ory was of his sec­ond-row mate, Brodie Re­tal­lick.

White­lock, well, as ever he was good, very good. But Re­tal­lick, he was great. None of this woolly no­tion of great­ness for a cou­ple of tries or kicks. This was the real thing. A truly com­plete per­for­mance from the 27-year-old.

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