Super Rugby

Barrett keen on Blues debut against former Hurricanes team

All Blacks star Beauden Barrett is eager to make his Super Rugby debut for the Blues against his former team, the Hurricanes, next month.

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Barrett has returned from an extended break, taken at the conclusion of last year’s Rugby World Cup, and on Monday and Tuesday took part in Blues training sessions for the first time since joining the Auckland-based club.

Although no firm date has been set for his Blues debut, he is excited about the prospect of taking on the Hurricanes at Eden Park on April 11.

“That would be the dream,” Barrett told Newshub.

“It wouldn’t be a bad way to start, but I have to get myself to where I need to be to be part of this team.

“It will be fun and I’m sure it will be heated too.”

But neither Barrett nor Blues head coach Leon MacDonald would confirm the player’s comeback date.

The 28-year-old is still finding his feet in his new surroundings and MacDonald’s big concern is the player’s physical condition.

“Nothing is confirmed,” said MacDonald.

“The guys out there are conditioned from 10 weeks of competitive rugby.

“Beaudy’s last game was in October-ish - you can’t just jump straight back into it without being physically ready.

“There are a lot of boxes to tick, but we are aiming for mid-April.”

Barrett will return to action in a club game in the Taranaki provincial competition on April 4.

The two-time World Rugby Player of the Year will use the next three weeks to get back to full fitness and familiarise himself with the Blues playbook.

He is excited by the prospect of playing for his new team especially after they won their last three matches on the road against the Bulls, Stormers and Hurricanes.

“There is so much to get excited about, but what I really love is how grounded and hard working they are inside the camp,” said Barrett.

“It’s just one day at a time within the camp and we have worked really hard the last couple of days.”

- TEAMtalk media

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