Wed 26 Dec 2018 | 03:16

It's been a tough year for Read

It's been a tough year for Read
Wed 26 Dec 2018 | 03:16
It's been a tough year for Read

IN THE SPOTLIGHT: All Blacks captain Kieran Read was far from his best during the 2018 season.

The No.8 received a lot of criticism for his performances on the field this year.

“Kieran Read’s a legend of the game, but he’s nowhere near playing at a level which we’ve got used to – he doesn’t even come into the equation for me,” said former England wing Ugo Monye while selecting a World XV of 2018 on the BBC’s Rugby Union Weekly podcast.

However, 2018 has been one long battle for the veteran All Black. Read told NewstalkZB that it took him all of 2018 to try and get into shape after he underwent surgery to his back late last year.

“Getting over back surgery was probably the biggest thing for myself,” he said.

“It took a lot of time and effort. It was a big year in a lot of ways but that was probably the main thing.

“It’s really good. It’s been 12 months since the surgery and it probably wasn’t until basically the end of the year where I started feeling somewhat decent physically.

“So it bodes well to head into this off season and pre-season feeling in really good shape.

“Where I was at this point last year, the pain I was in, it [surgery] was needed. It’s been a fairly fast recovery in some respects. I’ve worked pretty hard at it and I’m in good shape now.

“There weren’t too many nerves around the back as such it was more about the whole body and getting it going.”

Read confirmed that he would be saying goodbye to the All Blacks after next year’s World Cup in Japan.

A “short stint” playing in Japan or Europe after the World Cup looks set to be the next chapter in Read’s career which he feels will be a good experience for his family.

“As a family it will be a good opportunity,” he said.

“My wife and kids have made a lot of sacrifices over the years I’ve been playing. It’s probably the hardest thing. You appreciate that and know how much it takes out of them. Spending more time with them would be cool.”

Source: NewstalkZB & BBC

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It's Been A Tough Year For Read - New Zealand | Rugby365