Brodie Retallick This is another astonishing ingredient!
Nine months ago Luke Whitelock captained the All Blacks to a 69-31 victory over Japan in Tokyo.
That game at Ajinomoto Stadium on November 3 was his seventh test for his country. And possibly his last.
Although not included in the All Blacks squad that later travelled to England, Ireland and Italy the No 8/blindside flanker would have hoped to remain in the frame for the Rugby World Cup.
But Whitelock didn’t receive any good news from the All Blacks selectors earlier this month.
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Despite pumping out his usual workmanlike performances for the Highlanders in Super Rugby, he wasn’t included in the 39-man squad for the opening rounds of the Rugby Championship; eight other loose forwards, including the uncapped Luke Jacobson, were picked instead.
Now Whitelock, who will begin a three-year deal with French club Pau at the end of the year, must keep plugging away as the Canterbury captain in the Mitre 10 Cup and remain on standby for the global tournament in Japan later this year.
Canterbury coach Joe Maddock didn’t waste precious time when considering whether to r
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