Todd ready for Barbarians' tricks

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Lynn McConnell     31 Oct 2017     Getty Images

Robertson is assisting former Crusaders and Australia coach Robbie Deans in preparing the Barbarians for the tour-opener at Twickenham.


Todd said he had already heard from Robertson in London that he had a couple of tricks up his sleeve and as a coach who always had something to produce in a game, being a festival game there would be more reason than usual to take that approach.

Todd was hopeful that his injured groin was behind him so that he could be considered for the game. He was keen to test it out in the team's first training session on grass in London on Monday. He said it felt good and it would be a case of testing it out. But he was confident he would be available for selection at the weekend.

Todd had an extra incentive to be available for the Barbarians game. Apart from the fact it was another opportunity to play for the All Blacks, there was the chance to become a member of a select group to have played for and against the Barbarians.
He played for them in 2014 and knew what happened in their unique environment.

"The Baabaas are the last of that slightly amateur type of style. You come together enjoy a few beers to get to know each other and you go out and express yourself and you play a good brand of footy.

"We know they'll be excited and they'll chuck the ball around. And knowing their coaches, they'll come up with a few trick plays and keep it interesting and exciting so it'll be an awesome game to be part of and Twickenham's a hell of a stadium so to be able to play there would be awesome."

He added it would be a massive opportunity to push for a Test spot.

Todd said several of the New Zealanders in the Barbarians would be highly-motivated especially as they would be joining the All Blacks in France with a chance to play against the French Barbarians.