Carter concern for All Blacks
November 23, 2012
Dan Carter is a major injury concern for the All Blacks ahead of their clash with Wales © Getty Images
Dan Carter has emerged as a major injury doubt for New Zealand ahead of their clash with Wales in Cardiff on Saturday.
The 30-year-old fly-half, who was named in the All Blacks side earlier this week, pulled up in training on Thursday with "a leg twinge" throwing his participation in doubt.
Carter was set be assessed by medical staff with a decision on his involvement in the Test would be given at the captain's run at the Millennium Stadium later today.
If Carter does not start his place will go to Aaron Cruden because the other option - Beauden Barrett - has been nursing sore ribs this week. Cruden's promotion from the bench would likely see the versatile Piri Weepu offer cover at both fly-half and scrum-half.
Carter has scored 162 points in nine appearances against Wales, while the All Blacks, who are unbeaten in 19 Tests, have not lost to their hosts since 1953.
In related news, head coach Steve Hansen is refusing to take Wales lightly despite their disastrous autumn campaign that has seen them lose to both Argentina and Samoa.
"I don't have too much sympathy for them - I am in the opposition camp these days!" said the former Wales boss. "But what it does do is I know it will make them tighter. Invariably, when they get criticised, they get tighter. It will make them more dangerous, I think."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
The time for tinkering is over - England must nail their colours to the mast in key positions, writes Phil Vickery
"New Zealand-born Joe Schmidt has forged the Irish into a street-smart, well- prepared side," John Mitchell on the Irish renaissance
"I am bored of hearing 'I can't fault the effort'. Let us take that for granted and look for some quality." John Taylor writes
Reports comparing the 2014 Wallabies with their rabble-like predecessors of 2005 are unfair and self-serving, Greg Growden reports