Foster’s verdict on Jordi experiment and RTS impact says world is catching AB

All Blacks coach Ian Foster has given his verdict on the development of code-hopper Roger Tuivasa-Shake, whether he sees Jordi Barrett as a potential Test number 12 and an important area where other teams hold him because the focus has shrunk ahead of the 2023 World Cup.

In an impressive hour-long chat on the All Blacks podcast over the weekend, Foster talks about his life in rugby, immediately before returning to the nitty-gritty of the future. The All Blacks will announce the name of a squad on Monday 13 June after the Super Rugby semifinals are decided.

Foster said the current World Cup cycle is different than before, but he believes his team is tracking well.

“We did the first two years of the World Cup cycle,” he said. “Usually you’re trying to establish your game, to smooth everything out, often the third year is about building some depth and then the fourth year is to go and do it.

“It simply came to our notice then. The first year we had only six Tests. Last year we had 15, but we were far from home. We had 40 players because of the quaid quarantine and all those things.

“So we went into a deeper strategy last year (because) we were somehow compelled.

“This year we’re going to shrink the squad a bit – it won’t be 40, we’re probably going to go with 36 people at this stage. It’s about creating combinations and getting a little more consistency when it comes to selection.

“It simply came to our notice then. We’re in a great place now that we’ve tasted it and we’re shrinking it. “

He said the series against Ireland would be crucial for this cycle, and that the All Blacks expected a tougher challenge from the Northern Hemisphere Turing team at this time of the season than they could normally expect.

The All Blacks 2021 ended with a 29-20 loss to the Irish in Dublin and then a defeat against France.

“We’re still hitting the last two from last year and we’re pretty proud of what we did last year but the last two … we have to take those lessons and we have to go straight to it,” Foster said.

“We know we’ve got an Irish team around Leinster and they have a lot of coordination in that team and they will be really ready so we have a series with some real meat.

“It simply came to our notice then. This is going to be a great test for us. “

Foster was asked if one of his priorities was to come up with an effective plan to deal with the rush defense that had been successfully used to blunt their attack.

“Every time we lose, it’s shattered,” Foster said. “There is no doubt that the Rush defense is getting faster every time.

“Playing against is really uncomfortable and nobody likes it. You can use a Northern Hemisphere equation to play against it by saying let’s kick everything – in other words let’s not play against it but turn them around.

“Our DNA always wants us to play – give us the ball, we want to be better than that.

“It simply came to our notice then.

“We are naturally a larger passing team, we like to create bigger passes and places where you get distracted by the speed of the line. “

He said that all blacks have to adjust to what works in super rugby.

“Some of our instincts that potentially come out of super rugby and they come up on the international stage against this type of team and all of a sudden they don’t work perfectly,” he said.

“So [it’s about] Some habits are broken. There we have to learn some new habits that we are working on and we have to work hard on the length of our passes and how we kick against some of these teams. ”

Foster warned that other teams were catching up with the All Blacks in terms of speed and efficiency, “two aspects that we have probably historically been number one in the world.”

“I’m talking about speed and the speed of doing things around the park, and in general all the black players are really good.

“We just think that these are two areas that if we look at it now, we see that other teams are starting to catch up in other competitions because they are putting a lot of effort into these two areas.

“I look back at last year’s experience. We had a great rugby championship, went to the UK and we couldn’t be faster in those last two Tests and played two teams that were fast and really quite skilled.

“It simply came to our notice then.

“Some of the work we’ve been doing in the Super Rugby franchise has been outstanding but we have to keep going and grow it.”

While not wanting to get too involved in the selection process, Foster questioned Twivasa-Shake, who has gained some heights since joining the Blues from the NRL.

“We’re satisfied with Roger’s growth, especially on the defensive side. He looks reasonably stable,” Foster said.

“It doesn’t mean he’s fine, but he’s good at carrying things. He is probably still learning how to link and get the passing game. I’m not sure the status of his kicking game because I haven’t seen it yet.

“But I know he’s an outstanding guy, he’s doing great at the Blues. We’ve made some connections with her, and I know she’s in a great place. We’ve only seen his progress, and in particular, the next four or five weeks will be crucial. “

Roger Twivasa - Check of the Blues.

Roger Twivasa-check. (Photo by Joe Allison / Getty Images)

He said the selectors watched with interest because All Blacks fullback Jordi Barrett played at No. 12 for the Hurricanes this season but suggested he would not take the same step internationally.

“Honestly it didn’t excite me that he went there but it’s okay,” he said.

“He’s played 12 before, he enjoys it a lot and if it excites him, it’s great and I’m looking forward to seeing if it’s a long-term option for us because it could become one.

“My guess is that the formula I want to give you is that I thought he was one of our best blacks of all time last year. If you start thinking about the World Cup in France, the big stadium, then you have to have a three behind you who diffuses the high ball and got a great kicking game and is defensively strong. He ticks those boxes. I still love him at 15 but are we willing to consider some alternatives at 12, yes we are? “

Foster said two tough selections would come in No. 9 where at least five of his men pushed for the position, and at Luzhead Prop.

Elsewhere he has been inspired by the form of Raiko Eon.

“We’ve seen a huge increase in Rieko over the last few months,” Foster said.

“We had some great conversations. He thinks he’s a 13 playing wing and I think he’s a wing playing 13 but people grow up.

“He learned a few things about playing at the age of 13 and I thought he ended the year firmly for us. He’s really taken his game to a different level with what we’ve seen so far in Super Rugby, so I’m excited about it. “

He also discussed the demands of Dalton Palali and Ardi Sevilla.

“We are open to ideas. Love Dalton, love what he’s doing, love him last year. Thought he really raised his hand as an International Seven. He’s growing a lot, “Foster said.

“We have different styles of loose forwards. This is an area where we can mix and match.

“We see Ardi as 8 and 7. I love him as a player, he’s dynamic. At the moment 8 has some tremendous strength for him because it can free him a bit by carrying his ball. ”

Asked if there might be any barriers when naming a party in a fortnight, he added: “I don’t think there’s going to be a name pop up outside the square that people aren’t used to. Is there a possibility for something new all black? The answer is yes. “

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