New Zealand’s Piri Weepu has an international future at fly-half, according to All Blacks coach Graham Henry.
The Hurricanes half has made 15 appearances for the international team in the number nine jersey, or as a replacement scrum-half, but competition is fierce for three places in the World Cup squad thought to be allocated to specialist half-backs, with Byron Kelleher thought to lead the pack.
However, Henry said Weepu’s newly found versatility, with the 23 year old having featured at five-eighth for the Hurricanes this season, could work in his favour.
Henry told The Sunday Star-Times: "Piri showing he can play there is a bonus for us. If we do have a problem, or when we come to pick a 22-man squad we could have one number 10 and two halfbacks but know he could play there and play there very well.
"He’s played there a bit in the past but he also just loves that responsibility – he’s always had a desire to be the guy who runs the game and he does it particularly well and we’re not surprised he’s that good in that position.
"We know he can handle a pretty high standard of rugby at number 10 – he can certainly cover for Daniel Carter."