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'This guy is intimidating': Kieran Read reveals his toughest opponent

Kieran Read. (Photo by Hannah Peters/Getty Images)

As he prepares for life away from the All Blacks, departing New Zealand skipper Kieran Read has opened up about the opponents he found the toughest to face throughout his career.

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Speaking to Newstalk ZB while promoting his his new biography ‘Straight 8‘, Read named two former teammates who he labelled as “intimidating” to play against in his early years as a professional rugby player.

“Probably not too many internationally actually,” he said when asked about his toughest international opponents.

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“Certainly when you come up against Jerome Kaino and Jerry Collins when I first came along, that was someone where I was like ‘man this guy is intimidating’. Those two probably [are the toughest].”

The 34-year-old also showed some of his personality in the wide-ranging interview as he revealed his love for golf and music, two hobbies he’ll look to indulge in before moving to Japan to join Top League club Toyota Verblitz.

“I enjoy golf but I haven’t been able to play it to be honest for the last few years with my injuries … I’m up and down as everyone is. I’m looking forward to getting into that again.

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“Also I love music actually. It’s probably the thing I escape with.

“Probably [my favourite] band is The Killers. But I love The Beatles. Tom Petty I absolutely love as well.”

Read also dropped a hint as to what the future holds for him once his playing days are over.

“I’m unsure exactly,” he said of his post-rugby ambitions.

“But I do enjoy sport. I studied towards that and leadership as well. Wellbeing is what I’m interested in. So not necessarily something in sport but something around leadership would be ideal for me. I’m exploring a few different options in that area.”

In other news:

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J
Jon 5 hours ago
Why Scott Robertson may need to ease big names aside for All Blacks' flexibility

> it was apparent Robertson was worried about his lack of experience at half-back, hence the decision to start veteran TJ Perenara and put Finlay Christie, the next most experienced number nine, on the bench. I don’t think it was this at all. It was a general scope he was putting over all the playerbase, he went with this cohesion factor in every position. > If the main priority is to build different tactical elements to the gameplan, then Ratima is the man in whom Robertson needs to trust and promote. This also I think is antagonist towards the reference game plans. The other plans do not need the speed of which Perenara (atleast) can’t provide, and I think personal is going to be the main point of difference between these games/opponents. That is the aspect of which I think most people will struggle to grasp, a horses for course selection policy over the typical ‘Top All Black 15’. That best 15 group of players is going to have to get broken down into categories. So it test one we saw Christie control the game to nullify the English threats out of existence and grind to a win. In test two we saw Ratima need to come on which dictated that this time they would run them off their feet with speed and the space did open up and the victory did come. Horses for courses. The same concepts are going to exist for every group, front row, lock and loose forward balance, midfield, and outside backs all can have positional changes that the players may be asked to accentualize on and develop. There might be some that _it_ will not ever click for, but they’ll hopefully still be getting to enjoy unbelievable comeback victories and late game shutouts to close it down. Knowing does not mean not enjoying.

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