As a result, the announcement on Sunday slipped his mind.
The Blues prop and new All Black admitted he “totally forgot” about the announcement on Sunday, revealing he learnt of his selection from reading messages on his phone.
Instead of tuning in, the 27-year-old had been attending a church service that began at the same time as the announcement.
“It’s an online service and it finished about 11.40,” he said. “Afterwards I checked my phone and saw all these texts and messages.
“I flicked on Sky Sport and sure enough the announcement was on. I totally forgot about it and got the surprise of my life, really.”
All Blacks coach Ian Foster said Hodgman earned his inclusion after maturing his scrummaging work with the Blues this season.
Hodgman had a strong campaign in the front row for the Blues, performing well at the scrum, making plenty of tackles and showing his mobility on attack. Across seven appearances for the Blues in Super Rugby Aotearoa, Hodgman averaged nine tackles and five carries in 56 minutes per game.
Born and raised in Auckland, Hodgman travelled south to begin his professional career, making his debut for Canterbury in 2014.
“The result is that we can now announce a team that is rich in experience and a little battle-hardened after the Rugby World Cup, but forward looking with the inclusion of a number of new players. We’re delighted with the balance of the group and we look forward to whatever the challenges of 2020 throw at us,” Foster said after naming the 35-man squad yesterday.
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