Sport | All Blacks

Perenara called into All Blacks squad for first time in over a year

TJ Perenara has been called up to the All Blacks squad as a halfback option for coach Ian Foster, just a week out from their next test match against Scotland.

The call, a year since Perenara last wore the All Blacks jersey, is part of a "pre-determined plan," Foster says.

This follows the All Blacks' emphatic win over Wales in Cardiff for a 55-23 beating, highlighted by halfback Aaron Smith's record breaker as the most-capped All Blacks back player and his try double.

Foster will now have Finlay Christie, Aaron Smith (Ngāti Kahungunu) and Perenara (Ngāti Rangitihi) to choose for his two halfbacks before they face Scotland next Monday morning. Foster's No.9 Brad Weber (Ngāti Porou) and wing Leicester Fainga'anuku have since been released to join the All Blacks XV's final northern tour match against the Barbarians at Twickenham.

Perenara replacing Weber is part of Foster's "pre-determined" plan to have both halfbacks play for the nation's top team for a couple of weeks.

Foster has been keeping an eye on Scotland, as they beat Fiji 28-12 yesterday on home soil in Murrayfield and had a one-point loss to Australia a week before, 15-16.

"Each test is different; different conditions, different opposition, and different pressure points. The danger is when you try to copy and paste the formula - and you can't just use this week's formula for next week. We've got to make sure we rebuild from Tuesday," he says.

Following their Scotland clash next Monday morning [NZ time], the All Blacks will have another week to prepare for their final match of the year against England in Twickenham on Sunday, November 20.