Olympics a big drawcard for Highlander Smith

MARC HINTON
Last updated 14:08 10/02/2013
Ben Smith
Photosport
BEN SMITH: "It would be pretty special to be in an Olympic campaign for the New Zealand sevens team - I don't know how it's going to work but I'm sure most of the XVs guys if they could would jump at the chance to have a trial."

Relevant offers

National

Waikato re-sign Damian McKenzie, Atu Moli, James Tucker for another two years IBF set deadline for Anthony Joshua to fight Joseph Parker Why Lydia Ko can't wait for Rio and golf's gender divide over Zika New Zealand sevens team's Olympic quest takes shape as pools confirmed Euro managers wear hearts on their sleeves; Steve Hansen not so much Steven Alker, Colin Montgomerie clinch British Open spots in qualifying Feilding High hockey teams practise with Black Sticks player Sam Charlton Good news for Tall Blacks as star guard Corey Webster's calf strain not serious Troubled Parramatta Eel Semi Radradra a no-show at training Lydia Ko in line for yet more silverware following ESPY nomination

Rio de Janiero's not quite on his mind, but former sevens whizz Ben Smith admits a shot at Olympic gold is something he'll consider when the time is right.

Smith is the latest high-profile All Black to put his interest in the 2016 Olympics on the record, though the Highlanders utility back understands his short-term priorities need to remains in XVs rugby.

"It's a couple of years down the track, and I'm trying to get through each year as it comes," said the man who helped New Zealand keep its perfect record intact at the 2010 Commonweath Games. "In a couple of years if the opportunity comes to trial, I'd like to have a crack."

At 26, Smith has time on his side and a skillset tailor-made for sevens. He could be one of a handful in the running to make the World Cup/ Olympics double, alongside the likes of Liam Messam, Israel Dagg, the Savea brothers, Victor Vito and possibly Sonny Bill Williams.

"It would be pretty special to be in an Olympic campaign for the New Zealand sevens team - I don't know how it's going to work but I'm sure most of the XVs guys if they could would jump at the chance to have a trial."

Especially given the trend that Smith's spotted in the abbreviated game.

"Other teams are catching up. It's definitely competitive now and it's going to get even more competitive as we go towards Rio."

Ad Feedback

- Sunday News

Special offers

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content