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Liam Squire praised by fans

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Liam Squire praised by fans for making 'brave call'

One of the most high profile absences from Steve Hansen’s All Blacks squad this week was Liam Squire’s, after rumours had emerged that he had made himself available.

The bruising flanker missed much of the Super Rugby season with a knee and hip injury, and subsequently ruled himself out of the Rugby Championship, with many believing he would make a return at the World Cup. However, he confirmed on Instagram that he was not ready “physically or mentally for the pressures of test match rugby”.

In a brutally honest post, he said that it has been a “really tough year” for him both physically and mentally, and that he will focus on playing for Tasman Mako for the time being. However, he did not rule out returning for the All Blacks during the World Cup if there is an injury, providing he is ready to play.

The 28-year-old signed off by saying “for me mental health is a lot more important than playing rugby”.
This decision by Squire has received universal respect from the rugby world, as it is a courageous move to be so honest about mental health in sport.

Many people on social media have described the reputation that rugby has of being ‘hard’, but this is a wise move by Squire to open up.

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Playing for the All Blacks is the ultimate honour any rugby player can have, let alone playing in the World Cup, so to forgo that opportunity is a clear indication of the strain that Squire would find himself under. But being so honest is a huge step towards helping him and others.

This is what has been said on social media:

Mental health is something that is being discussed and focused on much more in rugby, and was brought to the attention of many recently after former Wasps lock Kearnan Myall explained how much he struggled mentally when playing. The more players that speak out means more progress will be made.

For now, All Blacks fans will be hoping to see Squire in the six shirt again whenever he is ready.

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Liam Squire praised by fans for making 'brave call'