All Blacks captain Kieran Read will make his long-awaited return to rugby this weekend, four months after his last game.
Read returns to the field for his club side University and is likely to only be given 40 minutes as he looks to get his match fitness back.
The 31-year-old, who wore a brace on his right hand for his country’s end of year tour, underwent wrist surgery in December and was always set to return in April.
The Crusaders have a bye this week and the highest-paid All Black is set to return for the Canterbury side’s clash against the Sunwolves next weekend.
This gives him a maximum of seven Super Rugby games before the British and Irish Lions tour gets underway in June. The influential number eight will lead the All Blacks for the tour to Britain and is poised to become the seventh All Black to play 100 Tests during the series.