Good(e) move for Dan Carter?

Should New Zealand already be looking at a future without Dan Carter at 10?
Should New Zealand already be looking at a future without Dan Carter at 10?
©Press Association

Fly halves are seemingly in the news every day. The wonderful creative folk at Guinness have produced a fitting tribute to Mr. J Wilkinson, which captures what he means to English rugby and now the French rugby public.

Andy Goode, fresh from scoring at his ancestral home, Coventry’s Ricoh Arena, has signed for London Irish. The press has fallen back in love with Sale Shark’s Danny Cipriani.  

All Blacks legend Dan Carter is injured again and will not play for the Crusaders against the Highlanders this weekend. After a mediocre performance for the Crusaders against the Rebels, the 32 year old has injured his right leg again after having only just recovered from seriously injurying it in the Super Rugby final last season.  

Dan Carter has been off the pace of his usual high standards and by his own admission after some rather average performances in the November Internationals admitted that he needed more game time if he is to improve his performances enough to make the All Blacks for their Rugby World Cup defence in September.

The problem is that the All Blacks have plenty of depth without having to carry Dan Carter to the Rugby World Cup, with Aaron Cruden, Beauden Barrett and Colin Slade all quality players and the likes of Tom Taylor, Ihaia West, Lima Sopoaga and Damian McKenzie waiting in the background.  

Does New Zealand still need Dan Carter? Should he be rested and kept in cotton wool until the Rugby World Cup or should he keep trying to get game time, even if it means that he might get a serious injury which could eliminate him from the All Blacks Rugby World Cup reckoning? Should New Zealand rugby say bon voyage to Carter already?

Carter was a brilliant player in his prime. He is no longer that much better than other players that he deserves special treatment. He needs to keep playing and get selected on merit rather than reputation for the Rugby World Cup, but only if he is playing well enough.