Being injured during the business end of New Zealand's campaign to win the World Cup on home soil left Dan Carter feeling like he had missed out, and the All Blacks flyhalf is eager to amend that at next year's tournament in Britain.
A member of New Zealand's unsuccessful 2003 and 2007 World Cup teams, Carter suffered a groin injury before the All Blacks' final group match against Canada in 2011 and had to watch from the sidelines as his team swept to their second Webb-Ellis trophy.
“Having been involved in three World Cups and had injuries, or parts of the World Cups that haven't gone so well for me personally... so I have achieved a lot in my career but the personal satisfaction of fulfilment of achieving what I want in a World Cup, I haven't had that,” Carter said in comments published by Fairfax Media on Thursday.
“It does add as motivation - 2015 is not far away now and I'm giving myself the best opportunity now to be a part of the All Blacks side playing at the World Cup.”
Like All Blacks captain Richie McCaw, a team mate at his provincial Crusaders club, Carter is taking a sabbatical to recharge the batteries and will miss New Zealand's June internationals against England.
He hopes to return through club-grade rugby and re-join the Crusaders for the latter part of the Super Rugby season before breaking back into the All Blacks side for the southern hemisphere Rugby Championship with Australia, South Africa and Argentina.
“Obviously the World Cup is a big focus for us now, it's only a year and a half away now,” said Carter, one of the best flyhalves to play the game.
“No team has won back-to-back World Cups - that's a goal for us and something we'd love to achieve. But there's a lot of hard work to go before we can achieve that.” – Reuters