Dan Carter would fit in with All Blacks squad

World Cup winner Dan Carter would not be out of place in the All Blacks squad at the global showpiece in Japan later this year if selectors sent him an SOS to fill the gap left by the injured Damian McKenzie, former coach Graham Henry has said.

Utility back McKenzie was ruled out of rugby for the rest of the year earlier this week after he ruptured an ACL knee tendon, scuppering Steve Hansen’s plans to take him to the World Cup where he could cover fullback and flyhalf.

Beauden Barrett and Richie Mo’unga were expected to be the specialist flyhalves in Hansen’s World Cup squad but McKenzie’s injury has revealed a lack of depth behind the trio.

“There’s been some talk about Dan Carter and I don’t think Dan Carter will let you down,” Henry told radio station Newstalk ZB. “He would be number three and I think he fits comfortably in that position.

He’ll add a huge amount of experience and intellectual property about the Rugby World Cup and playing international rugby. He’s been there and done that.

Carter, a three-time World Player of the Year, retired from internationals after his 112th test when he helped the All Blacks to the 2015 Rugby World Cup title but continued to play club rugby in France and Japan.

The 37-year-old recently underwent neck surgery which cost him a lucrative short-term return to France.

He is also not currently contracted to New Zealand Rugby, which excludes him from selection as the All Blacks have a firm policy of picking only locally-based players.

“It’s just obvious they have to qualify and they have to be playing and signed in this country to be available for the All Blacks,” Henry said.

“I’m sure he’ll be good for Beaudy and Richie if he was there. And who knows? But it sounds like there’s a lot of work going on behind the scenes.”

Carter is not the only former player being mentioned as a potential candidate with local media reporting that Aaron Cruden could leave Montpellier and return home on a short-term contract before joining former Super Rugby coach Dave Rennie at Glasgow.

The 50-test veteran left New Zealand after the 2017 British and Irish Lions Tour to play in France but has struggled to assert himself in Europe

More on this topic

New Zealand down brave Japan in Tokyo

New Zealand break policy by selecting Japan-based Matt Todd

All Blacks rally to thrash Australia in Sydney

Broadcasters who breach advert code to be taken off air

More in this Section

Football Twitter goes wild for cathedral bust that looks like John Motson

Birmingham 'part company' with Garry Monk

Bold move pays off as Circus Maximus wins St James's Palace Stakes

Caster Semenya: IAAF used me as ‘human guinea pig’ for testosterone limit


Whatever happened to Duncan James from Blue?

As a 10-year-old girl climbs El Capitan – 7 reasons to get into climbing, whatever your age

Follow the garden trail to West Cork's Drishane House

How boxing class has helped this cancer survivor keep fighting fit

More From The Irish Examiner