Hansen calls for annual Test against Six Nations champions

Date published: September 21 2016

All Blacks coach Steve Hansen wants the Six Nations winners and the Rugby Championship winners to play each other once a year to shake up world rugby.

World Rugby are trying to change the scheduling of the rugby season with a desire to better align the northern and southern hemisphere calendars. At this stage the Six Nations will still be played in its traditional February/March slot but Hansen feels more flexible scheduling will 'send the game through the roof'.

"It’s a no-brainer. You’ve got to say, “What’s best for our product so we can keep attracting people to come and watch it?” Hansen told the Daily Mail.

"First, our players need a decent pre-season. You’d play club competitions simultaneously. We could have the European Cup winners play the Super Rugby winners and the Six Nations winners play the Rugby Championship winners. We need some goodwill to sort it out."

Under the new scheduling proposal June Tests are due to be scrapped in World Cup years but the British and Irish Lions tours won't be affected. The Lions tour New Zealand in 2017 and Hansen, whose All Blacks team are currently sweeping aside all comers, wants a whitewash.

"We’ll want to win 3-0," said Hansen. "If the northern nations keep playing well they’ll provide a headache for the selectors."