TODAY |

'Conrad Smith was my idol' – All Blacks rookie credits legendary midfielder after Test debut

All Blacks utility back Braydon Ennor credited the influence of legendary centre Conrad Smith, after making his Test debut in yesterday morning's 20-16 victory over Argentina.

With a number of senior players rested in Buenos Aires, 22-year old Ennor made his first Test appearance, coming off the bench for his first taste of the black jersey.

Yesterday's debut comes off the back of Ennor helping the Crusaders to a third straight Super Rugby title, his second overall, finishing as the competition's second highest try scorer behind teammate Sevu Reece.

Speaking to allbacks.com, Ennor revealed his long term desire to emulate Smith, who played 94 Tests, including winning two World Cups.

"Growing up [I'd] always look at the black jersey, Conrad Smith was my idol," Ennor said.

"To be able to join a team that he's played for, and he's created a legacy behind, it was awesome."

Ennor also spoke of the difficulty in facing the Pumas in front of a passionate Argentine crowd, as the All Blacks narrowly avoided a first loss to the South American side.

"You could feel the pressure, even from the bench.

"Argie are a proud people, they're a loud people.

"You could hear the songs, hear the whistles and the cheers, it was awesome to be a part of it, get on the field and feel that atmosphere."

Ennor will now be looking to keep hold of his All Blacks spot as they face the Springboks in Wellington this weekend.


More From