Taylor grateful for return-to-play protocols

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Taylor, 30, who has played 61 Tests, explained on Tuesday that he was grateful for that new step which sees an independent medical expert assess players before they are free to return to play.

 

"I would say back in the day, I probably would have had to roll up and play the next week. But, if I am being 100 percent honest, I wouldn't have been absolutely right leading into that next week of prep," he said.

 

"If those protocols weren't in place, then you are probably jumping into the first training and putting yourself at risk even more.

 

"It's the most important part of a human, I guess, the brain. Once you lose that, you are a different person altogether, so I don't want that to be the case," he said.

 

The All Blacks' management provided their support by giving the benefit of another week off.

The independent expert assessed the video of how his head knock happened, and he had to go through the now usual tests.

 

"It is pretty hard. It is like going back to uni, the tests," he said.

 

But it was important not only for his health in the moment but for his future health, he said.

 

Taylor was impressed with the way the younger hookers in the squad, Asafo Aumua, who made his starting debut against Argentina, and Samisoni Taukei'aho, who has made his place so quickly after being called in as cover after the naming of the first squad for the year, had handled the game.

 

They had to cope with close scrutiny against Argentina whose lineout ploys required a change of tactics for the All Blacks on their throws.

 

The Argentinians won two All Blacks throws towards the back of the lineout, forcing them to throw to the front.

 

That was a common tactic now from teams who realised that ball won from the back of the line offered the best quality ball for the backs to use, he said.

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