All Blacks halfback Aaron Smith believes his 2016 toilet tryst in Christchurch cost him the honour of leading New Zealand's pre-match haka, saying the incident cost him mana within the side.
Smith, 29, was exposed during the 2016 Rugby Championship as being involved in the act in a disabled toilet in Christchurch and was sent home from South Africa as a result.
In a new book titled 'The Jersey' by British journalist Peter Bills, Smith spoke openly about the incident, saying it cost him his role as the leader of the All Blacks' haka, with TJ Perenara assuming duties in his absence.
"I was one of the first to say, 'I should not be doing it', and that is what happened," Smith says.
"It's a part of the mana, isn't it? You lose mana when you do things like that. TJ Perenara took over and I was happy for him to do that because of the mana I had lost from what I had done."
All Blacks mental skills coach Gilbert Enoka concurred with Smith, adding:
"What Aaron did was so severe for himself personally that it shattered him hugely."
"He needs to think why he screwed up. It was like a tide that crept up. You think you are indestructible and above different things. But suddenly you come crashing down in a huge way."