Milner-Skudder backed to shine for NZ

Date published: August 4 2015

All Blacks centre Conrad Smith has backed potential new cap Nehe Milner-Skudder to be a success for New Zealand.

Milner-Skudder is in contention to start in this weekend's Rugby Championship decider in Sydney against Australia.

The Hurricanes flyer enjoyed a breakout season in Super Rugby, scoring a number of memorable tries.

Now he is waiting for his chance to have a crack at the next level and Smith, Milner-Skudder's captain at the Hurricanes, believes he has the ability to to make an impression in Test rugby.

"He is a little bit different and that's what the coaches within this environment have seen and that's why they're keen to give him a shot," Smith told Stuff.

"He's impressed me within the Hurricanes with the way he plays and he's got a smart head on him. He reads the game particularly well so he's got a big future.

"He had a few niggles he had to sort out but he's dealt with that. Last year the coaches at the Hurricanes were keen to give him a run but he has been hampered by injuries.

"He knows he had to get his body right so he's showed a lot patience and it's been much the same here.

"He's sat back and done everything he needed to do. I know if given an opportunity he'll take it."