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'It's up to me now' – Akira Ioane ready to take All Blacks chance after meeting with Steve Hansen

Blues number eight Akira Ioane has spoken about his one-on-one with All Blacks coach Steve Hansen, having been a part of Monday's foundation day in Wellington.

Ioane, 23, has been forced to be patient in waiting for an All Blacks debut, yet to appear for Steve Hansen's side despite having been involved in wider training squads and touring groups.

However, Ioane was also included in the All Blacks' 41-man foundation day group earlier this week, despite being uncapped at international level.

Speaking to 1 NEWS about the experience, Ioane opened up about his conversations with Steve Hansen, hopeful of a place in the All Blacks' squad to travel to this year's World Cup in Japan.

"It's a foot in the door, I've just got to keep performing," Ioane said.

"He's [Hansen] told me things I need to work on.

"It's a step in the right direction, but there's a lot of rugby to play.

"Sometimes it's hard being around everyone. But it's good to have a one-on-one and him actually show me and tell me what I need to do. It's up to me now. Only I can determine how it ends up in a couple of months."

Having met with both Hansen and the entire All Blacks' squad, the picture has become a whole lot clearer for the older Ioane brother, determined to cement his place in Hansen's plans.

"Now [that] I know what I'm actually doing, it makes it a lot easier.

"Now that I know, only I can make it all happen. I'm looking forward to it.

"All I'm worried about now is how I play here [the Blues], if I play well here and do the things that I've been told, then hopefully I do enough.

"At the end of the day I can only do what I can."

Ioane will hope to keep up his form with the Blues, preparing this week to face the Highlanders in Dunedin on Saturday.

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Ioane was part of the All Blacks' foundation day earlier this week. Source: 1 NEWS


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