Beauden Barrett

Beauden Barrett to reach stunning milestone when Blues take on Drua

Barrett will start at flyhalf as the Blues look to end the Drua’s unbeaten run on home soil in this year’s Super Rugby Pacific season.

Blues coach Leon MacDonald has made six changes to the run-on XV for this clash, which is set to get underway at 2.05pm NZST.

The Blues have been preparing for the “physical” clash with “heat fitness sessions” at training this week.

“We know these guys will be physical, we know the crowd will be loud and we know we’ll need to be at our best to come away with the points on Saturday,” MacDonald said in a statement.

Aaron Smith and Beauden Barrett: All Blacks to join Japanese club

Scrum-half Smith, 34, looks set for his last season in New Zealand having signed long-term with Toyota Verblitz.

Fly-half Barrett, 31, could still return home to play after 2024 following his spell with the same club.

Barrett took a sabbatical to join Japanese club Suntory Sungoliath in 2021 before returning to New Zealand.

All Blacks full-back Damian McKenzie played in Japan last season while fly-half Richie Mo'unga has signed up for the 2024 campaign.

Beauden Barrett feels fine

Barrett, who only recently returned to action following a concussion suffered against Ireland in November, was forced off in the Blues' 32-25 victory over the Highlanders in Dunedin on March 26.

The 30-year-old was taken off in the 41st minute after a collision with Highlanders centre Fetuli Paea.

"I was very relieved to wake up on the Sunday morning after the game feeling clear in my head. I just had a very sore neck," Barrett told Stuff

Concerning head knock for Barrett

Blues first-five Beauden Barrett was forced off the field with a knock to the head in the Blues' Super Rugby Pacific win over the Highlanders in Dunedin on Saturday night, just weeks after saying he feared his career was over due to concussion symptoms.

Barrett had returned to rugby recently following a serious concussion in November during the All Blacks' loss to Ireland, and last night's game at Forsyth Barr Stadium was his first start of the season.

Beauden Barrett stars in big All Blacks win

The All Blacks outscored their hosts by seven tries to one at a capacity Principality Stadium in another ominous reminder of their power as they went back to the top of the world rankings.

TJ Perenara, Will Jordan, Dalton Papali, Sevu Reece and Anton Lienart-Brown also dotted down with Jordie Barrett adding three penalties and five conversions for a personal tally of 19 points.

Wales, who lost skipper Alun Wyn Jones to injury early on, replied with a try from Johnny Williams and penalties from Gareth Anscombe (2) and Rhys Priestland.

Beauden Barrett to start in his 100th Test

With Richie Mo'unga unavailable for the Rugby Championship games in Australia, Barrett started the last two tests against South Africa.

Mo'unga has rejoined the squad, but Barrett has been preferred and will play his 100th Test.

Barrett will be playing his eighth Test against the Welsh in a stellar career which began back in 2012 and he becomes the All Blacks' 11th Test centurion.

Blues hush-hush on Beauden Barrett wildcard

Back from his time playing in Japan and finished with his two weeks in managed isolation, the All Blacks star returned to Blues training on Tuesday.

Barrett's return also coincided with first-five Otere Black limping from the training field after taking a knock to his lower leg.

Asked about the prospect of Barrett stepping in if Black's injury did rule him out of Saturday's final in Auckland, Blues assistant coach Dan Halangahu was staying tight lipped.

"I don't want to say too much.

Beauden Barrett's Suntory toppled by coach Robbie Deans' Panasonic in Japan final

Deans’ Panasonic Wild Knights, including Manawatu product and former Wales second five-eighth Hadleigh Parkes, hoisted the Japan Top League trophy with a tense 31-26 win in the final.

Barrett, whose Suntory Sungoliath were dominant in the regular season, never got into gear in the decider and their late surge wasn’t enough at Prince Chichibu Memorial Stadium.

A masked-up Deans had a typically low-key celebration at the final whistle, in a final played in front of a crowd after much of the season was conducted behind closed doors amid Covid-19.

All Blacks Beauden Barrett and Kieran Read in hunt for Japan Top League rugby title

Deans' Panasonic Wild Knights will meet Toyota Verblitz - where Hansen is director of rugby - in one playoff on Saturday, while Barrett's unbeaten Suntory Sungoliath will oppose ex-All Black Ryan Crotty's Kubota Spears in the Sunday semifinal.

Neither of the former Canterbury and Crusaders coaching cronies will relish losing to the other, such is their pride and rivalry.

Hansen and Deans were first on opposite sides in schools rugby in Christchurch in the 1970s.

Beauden Barrett eyes All Blacks' No 10 jersey

Beauden Barrett, the two-time World Rugby player of the year who has been the All Blacks No 15 for the past two years, told Stuff he wants to be seen as a “specialist No 10” and is driven by the thought of returning to New Zealand and improving in his preferred jersey.

“Absolutely,” Barrett said from Japan, where he is relishing time in the Suntory No 10 jersey in the fast-improving Top League competition.

“I've always wanted to be team first [but] I guess this 10-15 thing has been a system selection.