Beauden Barrett All Blacks wing Rieko Ioane’s midfield switch at Blues is a puzzle

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Beauden Barrett Rieko Ioane in action for the All Blacks against Namibia in the Rugby World Cup.


Rieko Ioane in action for the All Blacks against Namibia in the Rugby World Cup.

OPINION:If Rieko Ioane’s proposed move into the Blues midfield is the answer to a frustrating year you have to wonder if the right question has been asked.

The Blues say they are committed to the switch but it will pitch Ioane into a position where New Zealand rugby enjoys good depth.

Beneath Jack Goodhue and Anton Lienert-Brown the likes of Braydon Ennor, the fast-rising Alex Nankivell and even the Highlanders’ Rob Thompson shape as better contenders than Ioane in a position that ruthlessly exposes any weaknesses.


The All Blacks new coaching team is almost complete, with head coach Ian Foster announcing three of his four assistants.

Yet, on the wing, with a few tweaks here and there, Ioane could regain the All Blacks’ No 11 jersey, or even make the switch to the right wing as someone who naturally carries with his right hand.

* Blues prepare for mid-April Beauden Barrett appearance, Rieko Ioane at centre
* Richie McCaw names his most inspiring, hard-working team-mate
* Why Grant Fox made his All Blacks U-turn: Ian Foster’s call, unfinished business
* Beauden Barrett’s arrival, Rieko Ioane’s switch highlight Blues Super Rugby squad

Perhaps Ioane will surprise everyone. He has certainly demonstrated

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