Blackadder ‘fizzing’ at opportunity to face Wales

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They got some lessons from the games that highlighted areas the All Blacks needed to improve on.


"I don't think it could have been better timing," he said.


And, as a player new to international rugby in 2021, Blackadder took some personal lessons from the experience.


"You've always got to be at your peak physically to be playing those top teams, you can't really be off because they'll punish you for it, and there's no hiding out there."


He will be operating alongside openside Dalton Papalii and No8 Ardie Savea, each having played on the openside during the season. They were all players who liked having a crack at the ball, he said, and he was hopeful they could snaffle opportunities when they occurred.



"It's going to be pretty cool playing alongside Dalts and Ardie and Arkie [Akira Ioana – substitute]," he said.


He and Akira Ioane worked together in the lead-up to games and often talked about various parts of their play.


Blackadder said he was one of several who hadn't played in Britain or Europe before, and they were 'fizzing for the game', he said.


He was still finding his way in Test rugby, but he enjoyed the process and the competition for places. Being selected for the Wales Test was 'unreal'.


"I'm expecting a physical game of footy. They're the Six Nations champs so credit to them for that. I know it's going to be a big crowd and we're up against a good Welsh side," he said.


While it was a longer tour by usual modern standards, the time had gone quickly.


"Morale is still high, the lads are still laughing and smiling, and getting up every day loving what we are doing. We're looking forward to the next three weeks," he said.


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