Many young New Zealand wingers have been weighed down with expectations of being the next Jonah Lomu, but in Caleb Clarke the All Blacks have a potential superstar.
Clarke had a jaw-dropping run on debut in his second Test for the All Blacks that ended with a playing height of 123 yards and 10 one-to-one busts to lead New Zealand to a convincing 27-7 at its Eden Park fortress.
Wallabies legend George Gregan played a lot of rugby against the late great Jonah Lomu and was impressed with Clarke’s brilliant effort to give the All Blacks a 1-0 lead in the Bledisloe Cup series.
Watch every game of the Bledisloe Cup 2020 Live & On-Demand on Kayo. New to Kayo? Get your 14-day free trial and start streaming right away“We saw what a wonderful player could do with this man in super rugby,” said Gregan.
“He’s got pretty good ancestry with his dad, who we played against at Ronny Clarke, but today he just added to the importance of power and precision and he has the ball skills and he’s been looking for work.
“Gee, he was dynamic and it was a great example of a young man who supports himself and his abilities.”
All Black’s legend Andrew Mehrtens played with Clarke’s father and was impressed with the initial take on the young winger, who clearly has the gifts to be a single juggernaut
“He has phenomenal acceleration and he just pulls his legs out of the duels and it’s obviously very difficult to bring him down,” said Mehrtens.
“Especially today when the All Blacks needed a little spark and a little forward and he just got it going and got his arms free too.
Ex-All Black ruined NZ rugby
“He’s a really good distributor too and has played as a center under 20 in New Zealand. He has great wing or center skills and wants to bring other people into space.
“That makes it really difficult for the defense because this huge ox player is running after them, but he’s also trying to give chances to other guys.”
Former Wallabies castle Justin Harrison was impressed with Clarke’s ability to play the real rugby and not be tempted to play seven feet.
“He makes very good decisions for such a young man,” said Harrison.
“A couple of times he got his arms free and tried to get through the pass. He holds on to cement the advantage he is creating with his athletic skills.
“He marries that with great attention to detail and that’s the superstar’s mark for the All Blacks.”
Social media exploded with fans delighted with the All Blacks unleashing their latest Lomu look in world rugby.
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